IT'S not about the finish time but the journey that brings Glen Waverley couple Lisa and Jake Dale back to the Kathmandu Adventure challenge at Lysterfield Lake each year.
Despite taking four hours, 59 minutes and 14 seconds in the 2012 race on November 10, Lisa Dale believes it's the challenge of the course that will bring husband Jake and herself back in 2013.
"It's our cup of tea. We'll definitely try again next year to beat our score," she said.
More than 3000 adventure enthusiasts have competed in the 2012 series at remote locations across Australia and New Zealand.
The event at Lysterfield Park earlier this month was the 11th and last race of the year.
Dale explained that there was no specific training needed, but she and her husband could have done with a few orienteering classes.
"We just did gym work, but the last month or so we did outdoor training up and down hills," she said, "as well as a lot more bike work.
"We love camping and the outdoors stuff, but we didn't have any orienteering experience, so it took a while at the start."
Two-person teams compete in the roughly 40km event and face varying legs of kayaking, mountain biking, running and orienteering.
It's a test of both mental and physical strength as well as strategy.
The key is for teams to plot the fastest and most efficient route as they read maps and locate hidden checkpoints.
The Glen Waverley pair hadn't planned on competing in such events, but after joining the gym a year ago, they were happy to test themselves in such gruelling circumstances.
"We joined up at the gym 12 months ago, and it was nice to work towards something," she said.
"I've never been a marathon runner, but this really appealed to me.
"We decided to jump on board after seeing that we had everything available to compete."
Describing the actual experience, Dale was happy with the course, but found mountain biking the most difficult leg.
Although she enjoyed the event, she laughed off suggestions of competing in the most iconic mind and body test, Tough Mudder.
"Maybe some overnight stuff, but definitely not Tough Mudder."