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Tough Mudder Training Tips

Tough Mudder Training Tips

Check out these Tough Mudder Training tips to get you to the finish line without breaking you down into little pieces. From online

Tough Mudder Team Consultants:
Andy Thom, six-time Tough Mudder veteran
Alex Patterson, Tough Mudder’s emcee and chief marketing officer
Jim Nix, your Tough Mudder coach

Tough Mudder 2012

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10. Avoid cotton
“You’re gonna be wet, you’re going to be fully submerged at some point, and it’s going to be cold,” Thom says. Stay away from cotton, which will soak up the water and mud, dragging you down and keeping you chilled. Instead, opt for materials that wick away moisture, like Dri-FIT or COOLMAX, and fit closely to the body to reduce chafing. That said, there is no dress code, and costumes are encouraged, so if you want to go shirtless or wear a tutu, do it. Just remember to bring a change of clothes so you can enjoy the post-event party dry and warm.

9. Run
“If you lack the cardio aspect of conditioning, you’re gonna struggle,” says Nix. There’s no rule against walking, but if you want to finish strong, you’ll have to train to run. The events incorporate 10 to 12 miles of running up and down mountains, across mud, and through obstacles—i.e. not in a straight line. Tough Mudder says you should be able to run five miles, Nix recommends working up to eight, and Thom recommends 10. The first half of our 12-week training plan will focus on tuning in your cardio.

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Inov8’s at Rogue Fitness

8. Wear gloves
“A good pair of gloves with open tips so the water drains out of them will help you grab onto things when you’re wet and doing the obstacles,” says Patterson. Weight lifting or cycling gloves will protect your hands and improve your grip on obstacles like monkey bars or rope climbs. Several competitors swear by Mad Grip gloves with the fingertips cut off.

Tough Mudder Electro Shock Therapy

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Rogue Pull Up Systems

7. Enlist friends
“Most importantly, get yourself a crew of awesome friends—people who are gonna laugh when they fall, and get back up,” Patterson says. Put your team together early. That way, you can help each other through workouts. The typical team size is between five and 10 people. If you can’t convince anyone to join you, don’t fret. “If you’re alone, you’ll end up joining a team at the first obstacle,” says Patterson. “People who didn’t know each other before they started have made lifelong friends from having done a Tough Mudder together.”

Florida Tough Mudder

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Rogue Fitness Sleds

6. Train outside
Tough Mudder requires functional strength to lift yourself over walls, carry a log, or slither under barbed wire. Create muscle memory by imitating these movements outdoors with plyometric exercises. “Don’t sit at the air-conditioned or heated gym and do bench presses and curls,” Thom says. “Mimic obstacles. Go to your local playground and climb around on the monkey bars. Get out in the fresh air, run up a hill, or climb a freaking tree.”

Tough Mudder SoCal

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Wood Plyo Boxes

5. Get wet
It will be cold. Don’t let event day be the first time you face the mind-numbing shock of plunging into icy liquid. “Train in the elements as much as possible,” Nix says. That includes training outside on cold mornings and in the rain. Or you could do what Thom did in his now infamous Tough Mudder training video (below), and start your workout by dumping a bucket of cold water over your head.

Tough Mudder Tampa

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4. Wear old, grippy shoes
“Wear an old pair of sneakers, especially a pair that has trail treads,” Patterson says. Pick a pair that isn’t completely beat, but that you don’t mind getting permanently stained.

Tough Mudder Training

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3. Fundraise
Every registered Tough Mudder gets a fundraising page to raise money for the Wounded Warrior Project, a non-profit organization that provides services to injured service members to help them transition between active duty and civilian life. If you raise more than $150, you’ll get a $25 discount on your registration fee. To date, Mudders have raised over $2.3 million for the organization.

Tough Mudder New England

Rogue Fitness Climbing Ropes
Rogue Climbing Ropes

2. Embrace the insanity
Conquering the unknown is part of what bonds Tough Mudders together, and every race has one mystery obstacle that you can’t prepare for by looking at the course map. You will fall, you’ll look ridiculous, and at some point, you’ll probably be scared. Enjoy it. People will be watching. “After the race, we’ll grab a beer, and stand and laugh as people come through Electroshock Therapy,” Thom says.

Tough Mudder Michigan

Check out Rogue Fitness Rings
Rogue Rings

1. Don’t stress
If for some reason you don’t want to complete an obstacle (ex: you can’t swim, and the obstacle requires jumping off of a platform into a pond), it’s OK. You can run around if need be. Just know that to qualify for the World’s Toughest Mudder, a 24-hour challenge in which competitors complete as many loops of a Tough Mudder course as possible, you should be able to do all of the obstacles.

Tough Mudder 2010

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Dynamax Medicine Balls

The CrossFit Grinder gym can get you in shape to do the Tough Mudder and Spartan Race. CrossFit Grinder gym is the only CrossFit gym in the Atlanta area with a real outdoor obstacle course. CrossFit Grinder is located at 7258 Roswell Road in Sandy Springs (north Atlanta), Georgia. CrossFit Grinder was voted one of the top personal training gyms in Sandy Springs, Georgia.

Tough Mudder Tips from

Tough Mudder Training Tips

About the Author
Brad McLeod enjoys training all athletes and helping them to reach their goals.
  1. Alan

    AWESOME TIPS!!! We, Team Mayhem are doing this in Feb of 2013 in Southern Cali….. We have an awesome team of men and women and are all avid crossfitters and bust your ass junkies….that day we are going to dine in Hell…I CAN’T WAIT!!!! HOYAHH

  2. Peter Dain

    Hello Brad,
    Do have a good Training Camp,your Vids are always interesting
    and get one thinking about Training.I am in my 4th week of Insanity
    Fitness,challenging in a lot of ways,very good Instructor Shaun T.
    The Best,
    Peter Dain,USMC,1965-1969