Episode 77 – Missy Morris – Spartan Race Director


From Missy:

I grew up around sports – my dad was a high school coach (football, basketball, and baseball) and I went on to play college golf and was part of the women’s basketball team (my freshman year we won the Div III National Championship). I got my degree in elementary education but chose to pursue a career as a golf professional. After 13 years in the golf business, I was burnt out and ended up moving into the motorcycle business, doing marketing, event planning, and running the motorcycle school at a Harley-Davidson dealership. While working at the dealership, I missed being competitive, I missed being an athlete and that’s when I found OCR.

In 2009, I ran my first race, the Chicago Muddy Buddy. I was instantly hooked. I ran a few local races and a Warrior Dash in 2010 and 2011, when I discovered Spartan Race at the end of 2011. I did my first Spartan, the Midwest Sprint in Oct 2011 and 3 days later I had major knee surgery (microfracture). I was on limited activity for almost a year, rehabbing and determined to run the 2012 Midwest Spartan Race, which I did. A few weeks later I road tripped to Boston for the first Spartan Stadium race and never looked back. In 2013 I spent most weekends racing – I finished 20 Spartan Races, got a quadruple trifecta, completed 4 Hurricane Heats, finished 43 races/events that year, and at the end of the year I was in 1st place on the Spartan Race Open Leaderboard. While at these races, I always tried to give back, whether by volunteering or by sweeping the last racers. I got to know the racers and even the staff pretty well.
Prior to flying out to the 2013 Dallas Beast, Tommy Mac and Laura Plourde reached out to me to see if I would be interested in joining the Spartan Staff. Tom McCormick and I sat at the fire jump in Glen Rose for well over an hour discussing racing, staffing, and the potential of me making the switch from racer to staff.

I started working as support staff the beginning of 2014 while still working my job at the Harley dealership. Mid 2014 I quit that job to have more availability to work Spartan Races. Not having a guaranteed job and no full-time work was tough but I was able to do something I was passionate about so I did what I could to make it work. On Jan. 2015 I was promoted to Festival Manager, overseeing the festival operations for particular races. Then by mid-2016, I was moved into more of a production leadership role, Festival Quality Control, and Training, overseeing the onsite festival operations for all races. I was asked for the first time, back in 2015 if I had any desire to be a race director and at the time I didn’t. I didn’t feel I had enough overall knowledge of race production, especially when it came to the course and backend side of things. Then a few times in 2016, the subject came up again and by the end of last year after having a pretty in-depth conversation with someone in leadership, it was actually something that I was considering. It was the next step for me to take. In April of this year, I was formally asked to be the Race Director for the Atlanta 2 race – it scared the crap out of me, but also excited me – it was something out of my comfort zone and I was ready to take it on. 


It was a great experience for me – learning all of the backend planning that goes into a race was eye-opening – from the site visit to google earth maps, to budgets, to rooming lists – there’s so much that even I had no idea about. Thankfully I had a great planning and production team to help me out.


Episode 77 – Missy Morris



Find Missy:


Instagram @cheeseheadproud

Twitter Account? @cheeseheadproud



Tune in on Tuesdays for New Episodes!




Margaret Schlachter

About Margaret Schlachter

Margaret Schlachter is Founder of She has been part of the OCR Community since 2010. When not working on the next article she can be found running from race-to-race. She is Editor-in-Chief of She authored the book Obstacle Race Training.
This entry was posted in Podcast. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Episode 77 – Missy Morris – Spartan Race Director

  1. Roxanne Cann-Dittman says:

    This was SO great! Love listening to Missy talk about her journey. She is EASILY one of the very best human beings my family and I have been blessed to know. She inspires people to go for it, to believe they can do things they never even thought of. Always has a smile. Just love her! Thank you for having her on.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • Categories

  • Archives

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to posts:

  •   Hyper Vest SXY and FIT from
  • Instagram

    • The old saying goes... give a man a fish they will have a meal. Teach a man to fish and they will eat for the rest of their life...
I was so young when I learned to fish it’s just always been a part of my life. I sometimes take the skill for granted because it’s always been there.
Over the weekend I got to share this skill with a couple of my nephews and nieces.
One in particular is the only one in his family not into running and hiking. Reed is more into his card games Ukio (or something like that) and Pokémon and the tv series that go along with it.
A week or two before the family reunion Reed told his mom he wanted a fishing pole 🎣. His mom said try it first.
Well within minutes of his first cast he was hooked. Watching his face bring in his first trout was magical.
After he caught it he said “I hope I like the way it tastes!” His uncle helped him clean the fish and he ran it back down to the truck (it was a 2.5 mile hike up to the lake) cooked it up with his uncle and said “Yum” as he took his first bite.
The world has another fisherman and he talked about the experience the rest of the reunion. I am one proud aunt.
#fishing #kidsfishing #americanforkcanyon #mentoring #teachingkidsskills #camping
    • Five days of digital detox at my inlaws yearly family reunion. This year the family changed it up with a camping trip.
Five days in the mountains with no cell service. I didn’t take many photos but l’m a sucker for a sunrise photo with my dogs.
Walking away with over 25 miles of trails under my feet, a couple hours of fishing, teaching kids to fish (probably the highlight), high mountain lake swimming, and taking some alone time to do a 14 mile trail hike/run to get to see the sunrise at over 10,500 feet.
#mountaintime #camping #americanforkcanyon #trailrunning #sunrise🌅 #trailporn #utahhiking #getoutside #womenadventure #adventuringwithdogs
    • Michelle Johnson @mysticcassandra is a social justice activist, yoga teacher, and Dismantling Racism trainer. In her work she explores how privilege, power, and oppression affects the physical, emotional, mental, spiritual, and energy body.
We had a fascinating conversation about her work, mission, and new book @skillinaction
Find it on your favorite player or temp link in bio.
#podcast #yoga #socialjustice #skillinaction #womenpodcast #femalepodcasts #changemaker
    • Feeling the summer stoke this morning from @stokedroasters love a good summer coffee.
#stokedroasters #feelthestoke #meanmugspottery #morningcoffee #coffeebuzz #coffeeroasters
    • You know it’s another hot one when the bees are bearding like this.
Bearding is kinda like hanging out on the porch on a hot day when it’s too hot in a non-air conditioned house.
Hanging out and trying to keep cool.
#beekeeping #backyardbeekeeping #topbarhive #summerdays #bees
    • Kara Lubin @karalubin founded the @100mileclub in 1992 getting 15 students out and running. Fast forward to 2018 - the organization served 1.2 million students at over 4,700 schools throughout the US and internationally.
She tells her story on the podcast this week! Find it on your favorite player or link in bio
#100mileclub #helpingkids #getoutside #changemakers #podcast #womenchangingtheworld #femalepodcast #inspiringwomen
    • Probably one of the best books I have read/listened to recently. Honored that I get to interview Roshi Joan Halifax this afternoon.
Can’t wait to have discussions about edge states, her awakening to the inner self, and capture just a sliver of her wisdom.
#bookstagram #readingtime📖 #buddhism #joanhalifax #upayazencenter #edgestates
    • Bliss is kicking off the 4th of July with style. Soaking up the sun and letting all the stresses of the world melt away.
Taking the moments to stop, reflect, and just be are lessons I continually learn from our fur kids.
#4thofjuly #dogstagram #sunbathıng #bordercollie #bordercollielife
    • Latest podcast out today with the founders of @meanmugspotteryco learn the story behind the company that have created the Dirt in Your Skirt Mugs.
#podcast #meanmugs #saltlake #womenownedbusiness #womenpodcasters

    Follow Me!