A few days ago I shared that I’ll be doing my first Tough Mudder…lawd help me! Luckily Eric “ERock” Botsford, Tough Mudder‘s Trainer and Warmup Emcee has provided me with some excellent tips on getting prepared. The Nashville event will be a 5K but I think these tips will work great for anyone training for any type of sport competition.
What’s the number one piece of training advice you’d give a newbie that’s training for Tough Mudder virgins?
When training for a Tough Mudder, people often forget that you are not only training to conquer the obstacles that are out there, but also the 10-12 mile run that goes along with it. A lot of people focus on the obstacles and forget that there is a fair amount of running as well, so it’s important to incorporate a healthy dose of both endurance and strength training into your regime. Whenever you can, get outside and train, whether it is in your local park or you head out on the trails, it is beneficial to run on the terrain that you will be likely participating on. Tough Mudder events are about teamwork at the end of the day, so train with a friend or partner whenever you can to keep each other accountable and motivated. The motivation of having another person there will help guarantee you get to the gym or get outside to get the workout in.
Do you think beginner runners could run TM? How many months before the event should I start training?
Yes, beginner runners can absolutely run in a Tough Mudder – you should start training ASAP. With the right training, preparation and mental grit, we believe nearly anyone can do a Tough Mudder. If you’re on the fence about doing the 10-12 mile Tough Mudder Full, or if obstacles with ice cold water or electricity aren’t your thing – we get it. We’ve recently introduced the Tough Mudder Half, which is a 5-mile version, designed to provide a more accessible challenge, without some of the more daunting obstacles you may have heard of. This is a great opportunity for those new to endurance sports or on the fence about the Tough Mudder Full.
Trail running is a great way to prepare for Tough Mudder because the terrain at events is nothing like running on pavement or the treadmill. Keep in mind that you’re not training for a marathon, and it’s totally okay if you walk between obstacles; you’ll have plenty of time to rest between obstacles, so work on your sprints and interval running instead of focusing on grinding away on long distances. One of the great things about Tough Mudder is that it’s not a race, so take time in between obstacles to talk with your team, get to know and give a helping hand to fellow Mudders, and rest so you can conserve energy to enable you to finish the course and crush the obstacles.
Finally, don’t forget about that upper body strength as well. Not only will you need your legs to carry you, your grip strength is needed for many of our amazing obstacles. Find a pull up bar and get to work. [Read more…]