Bushido Mud Run tests endurance, determination
When planning for weekend activities on Okinawa, one of the last places one would plan to visit are the training ranges on Camp Hansen, instead opting for a festival or their favorite off-base sushi or soba restaurant.
While many were still sleeping soundly in their beds, more than 900 people gathered at the Camp Hansen Parade Field March 30 dressed in colorful outfits, including tutus, combat boots, face paint and banana suits, to take part in the single Marine program’s Bushido Mud Run.
Bushido is a Japanese word that translates to “way of the warrior.”
“This is the first Bushido Mud Run we have been able to organize and the first time we have been allowed to do any type of recreational running in the training area,” said Randolph Mitchell, program manager for the SMP.
“The single Marine program is proud to provide the military community on Okinawa with this opportunity,” added Mitchell.
The mud run was organized to bring an event similar to “Tough Mudder” or “Spartan Races” to Okinawa, according to Mitchell.
“Over the last couple of months, we (designed) a 10-kilometer course through the jungle,” said Mitchell. “It is a tough course, which is intended to make you tired, wet and very muddy. The course is long and will have you running on loose soil, gravel and lots of mud.”
The run provided some participants with a rare opportunity to traverse the Marine Corps’ training ranges while competing and was open to all status of forces agreement personnel ages 18 and older.
“This is a great event,” said Frank Weissmann, manager of the Navy Federal Credit Union on Camp Hansen. “The course was very challenging but not so difficult to the point where people were unable to finish.”
Although the Bushido Mud Run was structured to mirror other events, some features were different, including being open to individuals as well as teams, according to Petty Officer 3rd Class Herschel H. Good, a Seabee with Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 5, 30th Naval Construction Regiment.
“The Tough Mudder is all about team effort and camaraderie, and many of the obstacles require the help of teammates to clear,” said Good. “This course is half the distance and fostered a more competitive attitude from everyone participating.”
At the end of the day, the first Bushido Mud Run was a complete success, according to Mitchell.
“We had a great turnout, and everyone was highly motivated to get muddy and tired on their Saturday,” said Mitchell. “I want to hold this event again and plan to do some more work on the course to make the next mud run bigger, better and muddier.”
Taking part in single Marine program events like the run on Okinawa is always time well spent, according to Weissmann.
“The entire military community on Okinawa really comes together for these events, and they are always a blast,” said Weissmann.