I took part and completed the 2016 Midlands Tough Mudder last year, and if I am being brutally honest it wasn’t so tough. Don’t get me wrong, I am no gym rat. In fact I’m pretty much the opposite, I do all this cardio stuff OUTSIDE the gym so I never have to step foot into one.

It would be fair to say I avoid all types of strength exercise. Last year I realised that this wasn’t going to be best way to train so I did some training myself.

  • I bought myself a pull up bar and although I wasn’t able to do any pull ups, I did go from being able to 1 (ok half! a) chin up to being able to do 6-7 with good technique (i.e. greater extension)
  • I did some press/push ups and went from being able to do 5-10 in a go, to doing 25-40 in one set with good technique
  • Final element was the plank where I went from 30 seconds to 3 minutes

There was no great science in the above,  I did them every day (when I remembered or could be bothered)

The result was on the day of the Tough Mudder, while there were plenty of people bigger, stronger than me; I knew I would do ok.

For the past six months I have gone back to doing nothing, so I wasn’t looking forward to the bootcamp-esque Trim Trail Mudder Training organised at work.

We would go to Willen Lake, run around the lake stopping at all the (fantastic) trim trail obstacles and do a set. We would also do some hill work at the Peace Pagonda in a scene resembling Rocky.

Willen Lake Peace Pagonda

The running wasn’t particularly difficult. I am going through a Purple Patch at the moment and feel stronger and faster. However I struggled with the obstacles. My push up and chin up ability is back to nil and the monkey bars? forget it!


I have 2 months to prepare.