Preparing For A Death Race

BYRON-The Stateline has no shortage of men and women who like to push their bodies to the limit. One Byron teacher is going to extremes preparing for something called A Death Race.

Training….day in and day out. All to prepare for a race that has no description. The only clue? It's the most extreme mental and physical challenges rolled into a ten mile course.

"It's not a race to win, it's a race to survive," says Gura. 

It's called the death race. And Bryon School teacher Adam Gura is putting it on his bucket list.

"Once I got through a couple Spartan races I was like they're good, they're challenging but I'm looking for something more."

It's the most extreme level of Spartan races held in Pittsfield Vermont each year. Competitors have to survive three days on no rest and just the supplies on their backs.

"One of the things you carry is an axe so you're probably going to split wood," says Gura. "You know there's probably going to be something to make your feet wet and uncomfortable. But other than that you don't know. One year you can swim three miles with 24 hours of no rest."

But it's a challenge alone to just stay awake for the seventy-hour race.

"I raised two kids," chuckles Gura. "No sleep is just part of the territory."

No sleep and extreme conditions might not sound like fun. But for Gura, it's all about pushing it to the limits.

"You don't really know what you are until you find your boundaries. If that means stirring pig guts after forty hours of not sleeping and saying ok I think I've had enough, I guess I know where I'm at then."

And yes, stirring pig guts has been a task on the death race list. 300 people will sign up and few will finish the challenge.

"There's a 13 percent survival rate. Not a lot of people win it," says Gura.

But it's not about winning.

"What you're going through is the same thing that they're going through, and they need the support just as much as you do. It's not one of those haha I'm beating you now, it's let's get this done together."

Gura says his training is also a communal effort.

"The school's very supportive. The kids at the school they rally around me. They either want to do workouts with me or ask me what they're doing. They're really on board with some of the challenges I do. Either that or they think I'm crazy."

And many do think he's crazy but that's ok with him.

"Everyone will say you're crazy or what's wrong with you? Or you have a sick way of enjoying yourself. But whatever, I guess different strokes, different folks."

Gurra will complete a 36-hour race in August and other obstacle races throughout the year to prepare for this ultimate endeavor.

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