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Training for Tough Mudder

Tough Mudder icon2What’s up? So I want to share with you my 2013 Charlotte, NC Tough Mudder experience. If you read my post from last year I pretty much go over with you what to look for, how to dress and some advice on my Beachbody programs that you can use to get ready to do your Tough Mudder. If Im going to be 100% honest with you I was a little under trained last year. I had done Body Beast I think for the most part, and I had done Insanity the Asylum, but I hadn’t ran at all and that was my downfall. Last year was super tough for me. This year, I kicked ass and so did my team. So I want to offer a little better advice on how to train for events like this.

How should I train for a Tough Mudder Event?

Like I said, I trained really hard for this years Tough Mudder. I’ll tell you what I did and what I think I could do to improve a little more.

Let me start out by saying that I was already in pretty good shape to start. Since becoming a Beachbody Coach in August 2011 I’ve pretty much worked out consistently since then, doing programs like P90X and Body Beast on a regular and doing the new releases like P90X2, Asylum and this years release of T25. After the release this year in July of T25 I did the first 35 days straight of T25 and then for the last 25 days of Beta and the entire Gamma phase I added in the Body Beast workouts each day and I also ran 6 miles twice a week for 2 or 3 months. If you don’t know, Body Beast is pretty much all weight lifting. Lots of old school moves and some new school moves. T25 is a nice mixture of cardio and resistance, all based around tight schedules. Its only 25 minutes a day 5 days a week. P90X is pretty much push and pull. So lots of push-ups and lots of pull-ups and there is a nice mixture of weight lifting to.

My Advice on Training

I would train at least 4-6 months ahead of your scheduled event. Any of the programs that I listed above will get you into great shape. Upper strength will save you time an time again in this event. You want to use your legs to run, and use as much upper body in obstacles as possible. Run, run, and run some more. My advice is to run 10 to 15 miles a week for 4 to 5 months. Some of the guys in my group ran once a week and they did an awesome job. I ran twice a week 6 miles each time and I did great. Honestly I stayed in the back of our pack the whole time. I’ve had knee issues in the past and because I didn’t run to train for the 2012 Tough Mudder that’s why my knee blew out on me, so I was extra cautious this time, but I believe that because I ran in training this year I didn’t have any issues what so ever.

There are some times that you have to swim. So of course if you want to complete 100% of the obstacles then I would advise you to know how to swim. I did get a cramp one time in the last 2 miles, and it was directly after an obstacle that I had to swim. Thats the hard part. Unless you have somewhere that you can run and swim directly after and then run some more, then its hard to train for it, but I think if you can run 10 miles nonstop you’ll be ok.

For those of you who may not know a lot about Tough Mudder its a 10 to 12 mile course of about 20+ military obstacles.

Charlotte NC, 2013 Tough Mudder Coures Guide

  1. Kiss of Mud
  2. Hazard – big pool of mud that had holes to step in. Nice way to start off!!
  3. Glory Blades
  4. Arctic Enema
  5. Hazard – I don’t remember what it was
  6. Cliffhanger
  7. Hazard – I don’t remember
  8. Warrior Carry
  9. Balls to the Wall
  10. Hold Your Wood
  11. Hazard – I don’t remember
  12. Mud Mile
  13. Berlin Walls
  14. Boa Constrictor
  15. Just the Tip
  16. Hazard
  17. Electric Eel
  18. King of the Mountain
  19. Cage Crawl
  20. Walk the Plank
  21. Hazard
  22. Funky Monkey
  23. Everest
  24. Electroshock Therapy

The group of guys that I ran with were great and we helped and motivated each other. We’ve all trained hard so that we could run this course nonstop with the only exception of stoping  for the obstacles. We finished the 11 mile course in 2 hours and 37 minutes. I want to say we actually ran it in 2 hours 17 minutes which I think is freakin bad ass. I mean there are some people/teams that may finish sooner but it was a great accomplishment for us! The average according to Tough Mudder is 3.25 to 3.75 hours to complete the course, so almost 1 hour ahead of average is pretty damn good in my book.

Just below tells why I we would have finished 15-20 minutes sooner…

One Obstacle Changed Us All!

There is one obstacle that my whole team agreed was the best and changed us all. This obstacle wasn’t even on the map. I had actually finished the Boa Constrictor obstacle. I was the last of my team mates to make it through this one. We were on about mile 7 I think. As I run over to meet my team so we start running again, just 100 feet from the obstacle was an extremely muddy 20 foot steep hill that we had to go down. There was a team of 5 that was trying to get down it as we approach. We had made such great time and wanted to just keep going, but we seen that this team was having a hard time figuring out how to get one teammate down the hill. He was in a wheel chair.

Tough-Mudder-Charlotte-NC-2013

Now this in my opinion took great courage. This guy had to put a lot of trust into his team. This guy is no saint. He’s no better or worse because he’s in a chair. And we didn’t treat him any different. What we did do is what Tough Mudder is all about. We saw a fellow Mudder that needed help. And we helped to get the chair down and back up the 20 foot hills. My team can’t take full credit. We did stop and we did help. But so did the other 50 to 100 people at the end of the Boa Constrictor obstacle. I couldn’t get a hand in to help on the way down, so I went to the bottom to wait so I could help going up. (This was in the woods mind you…not man made and there was a small but wet creek at the bottom to get through) As I basically slide down the muddy hill, I stand up and look up. I don’t care how manly you are, but I had goose bumps come over me. It went from my team of 4 plus maybe 10 others helping to what looked like 50 to 100 people. All standing arm-in-arm, working together to get this chair down the hill. It was truly amazing to see so many strangers, with one thing in common (fellow mudders) come together to help someone. To put another team before themselves.

We all agreed that it made the whole event worth while. It was a very humbling event. Im proud of the men that I ran with and Im proud of the other Mudders that helped out. I know for a fact that each TM event is like that in its own way. Mudders helping Mudders. Its a great thing!

Dow-Pender-Scott-Mercer-Cliff-Pender-Patrick-Fry

Dow Pender, Scott Mercer, Cliff Pender and Patrick Fry. I was honored to be able to call this my team! Im already looking forward to next year!

Moral to the Story is…

You can do anything that you want to in this world. There are always obstacles to face. But facing them and conquering them is what makes us stronger and better. Sometimes we are forced to rely on someone to help us. We have to humble ourselves and ask for help. Remember that asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness, but a sign of intelligence. In todays world we have to work smart. Set your goals and conquer them!

Pray-for-BrandonI dedicated this run to Brandon, a 10 year old brave little boy! Brandon Matthew Ingram has been battling Ewing’s Sarcoma since before he was diagnosed on November 28, 2011. He is now fighting a second recurrence. I wore a shirt to honor Brandon and to remind me that giving up was just not an option.

Anything is possible. How far past your limit are you willing to push?

I always ask that if you found this useful to share it amongst your Social networks. I truly hope this post was a joy for you! If you have any questions on the programs I used or about Tough Mudder post them below and I’ll be happy to answer them!

 

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(3) comments

Mo
4 years ago · Reply

I am a runner. Two halves, a good amount of 10ks, and a bunch of 5ks under my belt. I just completed my first triathlon sprint last weekend. I am signed up for the The Great Northeast Tough Mudder on August 24. I have the endurance with running….I have the cardio down….and the swimming…but I’m a teeny weeny gal…do I was thinking of doing T25 to train and strengthen for the Mudder on top of my continued tri training. What are your thoughts on that combo?

Mo
4 years ago · Reply

PS…..great story…thank you for sharing

Patrick
4 years ago · Reply

Mo, thank you for your comments.

I think that T25 or P90X3 would be great to add in. Both are about 30 minutes long. Both are great for building endurance and building up your cardio. It sounds like you’ve kinda nailed the cardio part of training so you probably should focus on some upper body training, along with balance. Tough Mudder is all about endurance, strength and stamina. A lot of the obstacles that are going to require you to use mostly upper body strength programs like X3 or T25 will really come in handy.

T25 and X3 are going to require a band or some light dumbbells, and a pull up bar. You can build the bar or you can get one that goes in your doorway in my “Shop” section.

Im sure you’re eating healthy and tons of good stuff. If I could make one last recommendation it would be to get Shakeology along with the workout. As hard as your training, you’ll need to supplement to put the good stuff, and the right stuff back in your body! I would recommend the Challenge pack of either T25 or P90X3.

Let me know if you have any other questions!! AND PLEASE come back here and let me know how you did! Show us a muddy picture!!

Heres a quick link to the challenge packs.
P90X3 – http://myhomefitnesspro.com/go/P90X3-challenge-pack/
T25 – http://myhomefitnesspro.com/go/T25-challenge-pack/

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