I ran my first Tough Mudder in December of 2011. Leading up to that race, I was a little freaked out, especially since I had not been training as hard as I should have been. At one point, I even thought about cancelling on my friends. Realizing that I could and should not do that, I sucked it up and made the trip from Atlanta to Tampa and got ready to run my first Tough Mudder… and I am so happy that I did.
Tough Mudder Review:
After running my first Tough Mudder, I have done two more. I try to do at least one a year and let me tell you why. Knowing that you have one of these races on the calendar makes you train more frequently, consistently, and harder. You also run these races with a team, since most of the obstacles are team oriented, which provides you with extra motivation, since your teammates are training just as hard.
While the race itself is quite difficult (there is no shame in walking or stopping to catch your breath) you will be surprised at how many people on the course are there motivating and encouraging you to push harder and finish. Also do not let any horror stories scare you from signing up and competing. Leading up to my first race, a lot of people (who had never run the event) had told me of the people who had broken legs, arms, ankles, and so on, and had to be carried off the course. While some of this may be true, it is few and far between.
Training for this event or any other mud run, you should focus on building up endurance and upper body strength. Since you will be working on cardio and endurance, your legs will naturally strengthen. If you feel that you may need some additional leg strength, then you can add in a couple sets of squats, twice a week.
If you give yourself eight weeks of training, prior to your race, you should have no problem conquering Tough Mudder. By the time you get there, the whistle sounds, and you start running, you will realize that while daunting and tough, it is something that you and your team can and will finish.
When you cross that finish line, possibly hand in hand with your teammates, you will be given a cold beer, an orange headband, and feel a great sense of accomplishment. Tough Mudders are meant to challenge you mentally and physically. As long you train, put a good team together, and work as one, while out on the course, you will finish with your head held up high.