A group of University of Indianapolis students who participate in the sport of Spartan races have partnered with fellow UIndy Police Spartan racers to try to create a Spartan race Registered Student Organization here at UIndy.
Spartan racing first started in the Green Mountains of Vermont and is an obstacle course consisting of spear throwing, rope climbing, sled dragging and other events, according to spartan.com. Since then, the organization has expanded to over 200 annual races in more than 40 different countries. Founded by Joe De Sena, Spartan seeks to replicate what typical spartan warrior training would have looked like in ancient Sparta in order to cultivate a strong body and mind according to spartan.com
Junior computer science and computer engineering double major Chase Frazier has raced with UIndy students for the past two years and plans to represent the organization as their president alongside their supervisor Lt. Brandon Pate of UIndy Police. According to Frazier, he and his group of competitors will continue to race throughout the academic year and encourage other interested students to get involved and compete as well.
Racing alongside Frazier so far this academic year was junior math education major and pole vault for UIndy Track and Field Devin Jaremczuk. He raced the 14 mile Spartan race called the “Beast” on Oct. 5 in Chicago. He said that on top of his track training, he adds stair climbs and extra mileage to his workout. According to Jaremczuk, he prepares to do plenty of burpees because during a Spartan race, when an obstacle is done incorrectly, the racer must complete 30 burpees before continuing the course.
“Thankfully, we really don’t have to do many [burpees] at all because we’ve just been getting better strength-wise [at] being able to do the obstacle,” Jaremczuk said. “There’s six, seven and eight foot walls you go over, mud walls you climb over ….The one [race] that we did a few weeks ago was 29 total obstacles and I don’t even remember all of them because you just keep going.”
Frazier said that in partnership with UIndy Police, there are 11 police officers that are interested in racing and they hope to pull in as many students as they can. Spartan has not partnered with any college campuses so far, but Frazier and Pate plan to put together a sponsorship through Spartan that would pay or discount race fees for members and would be the first to be partnered. Running Spartan races are more about overcoming mental barriers than physical barriers and by setting a goal and making it an individual challenge, any racer is able to do a Spartan race, Frazier said.
Jaremczuk said that he is looking forward to having a UIndy crew to race with so that he can show his passion for Spartan racing and help other students find their own. Giving his all and putting forth effort makes it easy for Jaremczuk to help put people in a position to do well, he said.
“This last summer, we had 15 members as a group and [now we] have 40 [students] that are interested in running …. During the first race that I did, we slipped into three different groups, the fast people going out [first], people in the middle, and then the slower people there in the back helping each other out,” Jaremczuk said. “Chase [Frazier] actually, was in the very back in the first race, just helping out other people.”
When competing as a team in a Spartan race, the largest team is set up with their own personalized tent and the race staff provides drinks and other accommodations. Frazier and Jaremczuk both said that they hope to get enough people together so they are able to be recognized as the largest team at a Spartan race in the coming years.
The organization plans to open to registration at the beginning of the 2020-21 academic year. Frazier encourages UIndy students who want to race or are curious about the races to get in contact with him so that they can get involved.
“Fitness has always been a big part of my life, and I know that for Chase [Frazier] too. So it’s kinda nice, to push that onto other people as well,” Jaremczuk said. “I know that anything you put your mind to, you can work towards it and get it.”