ANDERSON — A successful Dirty Girl 5K Mud Run requires mud, and there was plenty of that at the White River Paintball course this weekend.
Standing shoeless in a pair of muddy knee high socks, Michelle Hollowell of Howe said this was her second year to participate in the Indiana run. Last year, the event was held in Noblesville.
“It was a lot harder this year,” she said. “I got a full body workout this time.”
Heavy rains this week helped to create soupy plowed fields and a thick layer of mud that even the spectators had to tromp through.
The event, which is for women only, donates a portion of its proceeds to Bright Pink for breast and ovarian cancer research, officials say.
Comprised of 13 obstacles, six mud pits and stretches where the participants can run or walk, Dirty Girl is designed to remind women to embrace the messes in life, celebrate the obstacles and help other women do the same.
Tenzin Gyalcsen, race director and series director for the Dirty Girl 5K Mud Run, said the conditions were a little muddier than the organizers had anticipated.
“It is awful muddy,” he said. “Right now, it’s one giant mud pit. There is so much mud, it is making it difficult for people to run, but that just intensifies the experience.”
More than 4,200 people registered to run at White River Paintball, 5211 S. New Columbus Road, Gyalcsen said.
“We normally do not have a course of entirely mud,” he said.
Tonya Blevins of Noblesville brought a group of 15 high school friends and co-workers to the event. They spent several minutes preparing for the run by duct-taping their shoes on.
“It helps to keep your shoes on because the mud will suck them off,” she said.
And the best part of the race, Belvins said, is the free beer given to participants at the conclusion of the race.