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Competitions

Why Do We Love Crazy Competitions So Much?

Competitions go as far back as time itself. Man has competed for food, status, money, and fame since the dawn of time. Though competitions may be more "civilised" in our modern world than say, the days of Roman gladiators fighting lions in the arena, humans are always looking for new ways to create a whole new competition that is nothing short of insane.

In England, a grueling obstacle course competition requires all participants to sign a "death waiver" before entering. It is so physically challenging as to be more intense than any one-day survival training among military forces worldwide. I would expect many wills were updated prior to the competition, most likely at the insistence of a few nervous wives.

Alaska is fondly referred to as "The Last Frontier" for its vastness and untouched natural beauty. It is also a place of extremes. Sub-zero temperatures and the rough terrain are no deterrent for an annual 1.100 mile sled dog race that draws both men and women to brave the elements for a large cash prize. For a few years, a team of standard poodles has even run and completed the race. Until, that is, one was frozen to the ground. The dog was fine but that was the beginning of the end for poodles in the race.

For those who enjoy intense energy-robbing, sweat-inducing, knee-buckling heat, then head on over to the Sahara Desert for one of the world's most grueling footraces. This race takes place over six days in heat that reaches 120 degrees. Imagine having to carry all of your provisions with you, too. This, however, is not the craziest thing about this race. The entrance fee is $3,500 while the prize is less than $5,800. Something here just does not compute.

Competition is good. Some competition is just plain ridiculous. Why do we compete and why do we compete in some of the most intense, grueling, and insane races man can imagine? Maybe it's ego, maybe it's something primal, or maybe, in some cases, the money is just too tempting. There are probably just as many reasons as there are competitions. Some say competition is good for the soul. It is a test of one's own abilities to rise above the challenges through discipline and commitment. Maybe participants are just as crazy as the competitions themselves. One thing is for sure, they're tougher than most of us.