Last year four of us braved Tough Mudder Indiana. For those of you not familiar Tough Mudder, watch this promotional video before continuing. Tough Mudder Indiana was an incredible experience and immediately after we vowed to do another Mudder. So when Tough Mudder announced an event in our home state of Kentucky, we registered.
This year we named our team the Kentucky Irregulars from the movie Reign of Fire. Each of us adopted a theme from the movie. My brother wore a Hard Rock London shirt. Joel grew his dense beard to resemble Quinn. As the most extreme, I honored Van Zan by buzzing my head, growing a rugged beard, and replicating his bomber jacket vest.
Similar to last year, the weather was overcast, windy, and in the 40s. We had an 8:00am start time. So limited sleep added to the challenge. But we prefer the early start for a fresh course. Free from obstacle lines and everything covered in mud.
Now the Tough Mudder is challenging all around. Beyond the obstacles. You're running on uneven ground over rock, sand, mud, or tall grass. You're constantly wet and often covered in mud. So you're constantly carrying a few extra pounds. The weather, hot or cold, also drains your energy.
Most Dreaded Tough Mudder Obstacle
Previously named Chernobyl Jacuzzi. This obstacle is a 30ft long pool of 5ft deep ice water. Literal ice water. You climb up one side and jump in. Instant shock. You struggle to breathe. A barrier divides the pool forcing you under the ice. You climb out the other side. The water, so cold, shrinks your clothes.
Most Fun Tough Mudder Obstacle
Everest is a 12ft quarter pipe. You get a running start and leap for the rim. Typically mud covers the approach and ramp, adding to the challenge. This obstacle requires a helping hand from your fellow Mudder. And it's that camaraderie which makes this obstacle fun. Headbands off to the Tough Mudders who tackle Everest solo.
Toughest Tough Mudder Obstacle
The Berlin Walls are a set of wooded barriers ranging from 6-12ft high. Typically each course contains a few sets. The first few are easy. But when you get to the series of 10-12ft walls, the fun stops. By that point in the course, it takes everything you have and a fellow Mudder, to get over these walls.
Signature Tough Mudder Obstacle
This is the signature obstacle of Tough Mudder. A 10-yard muddy gauntlet of dangling 10,000 volt hot wires. The finish line waits on the other side. My goal is always simple – don't fall.
A Tough Mudder
While everyone loves the pictures, people always ask why. Why would you do that? It looks miserable. My brother tells me, “They wouldn't understand”. I agree it is difficult to explain. Ultimately, you're not going to understand Tough Mudder until you do Tough Mudder. I consider Tough Mudder hard fun. I respect the challenge.
There are signs placed along the Tough Mudder course. I noticed one this time to this very point. It read:
Be patient and tough. One day this pain will be useful to you.
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