I have been involved in the sport of obstacle course racing (OCR) since 2010. One of things that attracts me to this sport is the variety of skill sets required to be successful. In order to proficient in this sport your training must include running (both short and long distances), balance training, practicing heavy carries with implements like a sand bag or Wreck Bag, training on hills, as well as a lot of practice on American Ninja Warrior type obstacles. This requires the competitive athletes to very extremely well rounded.
In addition to being a jack-of-all trades, participants in OCR must be able to gut it out while racing in very poor conditions while being both cold and wet. The often intentional less-than-ideal conditions of these events has caused these races to be deemed “Sufferfests” by their participants and the media alike. The most extreme of these “processions of pain” is the World’s Toughest Mudder which is put on by Tough Mudder. This race is a 24 hour version of their normal events that are meant to push people to mental and physical limits by putting participants through a variety of torturous tasks that include being electrocuted, jumping from heights, and an endless number of water submersions. Sounds like fun right??
It was immediately following the 2012 World’s Toughest Mudder that the idea of the Neptune came to me. I have never been so cold in my life as I was during that event. Afterwards I thought, “there has to be a way to prevent this from happening again.” However, I did not act on my idea. In fact, it was only after so many of my friends were affected by hypothermia during the end of the 2015 OCR season that I decided to create this truly revolutionary product.
You see the difficulty in finding a way to keep the body warm while being exposed to such extreme condition that includes both cold air temperatures in addition to the person being wet is pretty amazing; which is why it hasn’t been done. The way we keep ourselves warm in a cold environment is with clothing which provides a barrier from the outside cold while also trapping in our own body heat. However, problems arrise when we aren’t able to produce enough body heat or when the effectiveness of our clothing is compromised (like when it gets wet). It’s at this point, that the risk of hypothermia is very real.
Enter the Neptune! The Neptune Thermoregulation System provides an external source of thermal heating that will continue to work even during repeated water submersions like you would see in sports such as obstacle racing and surfing, in professions like the Special Forces and Rescue Diving, as well as for hunters and even the recreational fan out at his/her kids soccer game or at a professional football game. Heck you might even see your coworker, Jane Doe in accounting, wearing it under her work clothes because her office is just way too cold for her.
The bottom line is, I saw a situation in need of a solution. People in these instances basically had to get comfortable being uncomfortable because that’s what was necessary to participate. In this regard, the Neptune is a “game changer.” Now being constantly cold is well… OPTIONAL!
Jason Rulo CSCS, CISSN, HFS