Malaysians Spartan Up in mass workout with Spartan Race founder, Joe de Sena
Over 200 Spartans-in-training were put through their paces in an exhilarating mass workout with Spartan Race CEO and Founder, Joe De Sena in Setia Alam recently.
The session gave Malaysians a firsthand experience of the Spartan lifestyle and training methods in the lead up to participating in the inaugural Malaysian Reebok Spartan Race. Spartan Race, deemed the world’s leading obstacle race, is one of the flagship events of the inaugural National Sports Day on 10th October.
Starting off the workout, Joe De Sena took the aspiring spartans through several challenging exercises, including Spartan Race’s most notorious move- the burpee. This full body movement exercise was popularized by the military and has become the ‘currency’ of all Spartan Races around the globe. Any participant unable to complete an obstacle during the race ‘pays’ 30 burpees in penalties.
4,100 burpees in 8 hours
CEO and Founder, Joe De Sena provided the greatest inspiration for this, having accepted a ‘Burpee Challenge’ in the past of 4,100 burpees in 8 hours during a “live-streamed” event in commemoration of successfully reaching 3,000,000 million “likes” on their Facebook page.
“I’m super impressed with the fitness levels of Malaysians in general. I think they are natural-born Spartans. I usually have a large number of people drop-out and not complete the workout session but that definitely was not the case here,” said De Sena.
Malaysians found out pretty quickly that Spartan and pain go hand-in-hand as De Sena pushed them hard during the 90-minute session. However, in true Spartan spirit, by the end of the workout, everyone, not just the self-proclaimed ‘fitness junkies’ wanted more.
Just when 50 burpees was a hardcore warm-up for many aspiring spartans, De Sena laid out another 50 squats, 50 reverse burpees, building up to bridge poses, bear crawls, crab walks, cartwheels and handstand walks. Everyone was fatigued, but felt satisfied and rejuvenated despite grass on their hands, legs, faces, and even under their shirts. Come the actual Spartan Race day, glorious mud will generously replace all that grass.
“I always thought my current fitness level was pretty good for my age. However it is only after this workout I discovered my fitness shortcomings,” said Raj Aria, TV Host, fashion-preneur and fitness enthusiast.
“After that eye-opening session with Joe, I now plan to train religiously and race in the competitive Elite Masters category to test my physical limits and inspire others that it is not all downhill once you hit the big 4-0,” he added.
Reebok Spartan Sprint: 22+ obstacles/6km+
Come this October, over 15,000 competitors and spectators from across Malaysia and beyond, representing every walk of life, age and athletic ability are expected to tackle the more than 20 obstacles within 6km in the Reebok Spartan Sprint. The Sprint is an excellent starting point to becoming a Spartan as it is fun for beginners while still giving seasoned racers plenty to test themselves against.
Many came together from gym, fitness buddies or boot camp teammates, encouraging each other throughout the workout. In Spartan spirit, no one will get left behind, and team work will truly be essential.
The Reebok Spartan Race certainly seems to have struck a chord with Malaysians as they have registered for the race in droves, leading organizers to announce a newly opened second day of racing on Sunday, October 11.
“Due to the strong demand from race enthusiasts, we are opening up race registrations for Sunday, 11 October as well,” said Marcus Luer, Founder and Group CEO of TSA.
“We are extremely pleased with the response to the Reebok Spartan Race here in Malaysia, a clear testament to how much Malaysians value fitness and adventure emphasized through obstacle racing in particular,” he added.
“I encourage more organizations to participate by sending teams to race as this is a great way to motivate and build morale. The biggest participating team on each race day will enjoy their own private tent and the exclusive Spartan Biggest Team trophy”.
For more information about the Reebok Spartan Race, please visit the Spartan Race Malaysia’s website.
To view more photos, visit Tough Asia’s Facebook album here.