Tough Mudder Northwest 2016 | Cholmondeley Castle, Cheshire
So having become a fan of OCR (obstacle course race) events and having attended about 4 different OCR’s in 2015, I decided I wanted to try a new one for 2016. Unfortunately 2016 has flown by in the blink of an eye, and I suddenly realised it was late August and my options for attending another event were becoming increasingly limited. However there was a Tough Mudder event in the Northwest in September which still had places left. I had always wanted to take part in a Tough Mudder as people seem to refer to it as the “toughest” event for OCRs.
Because I left it late the timing wasn’t ideal; I ended up having to do the event by myself and it was on the weekend immediately after an all inclusive family holiday! I made a video of the day, filmed on my GoPro Hero 4 Silver which you can see below.
The event was great fun, and the feeling of accomplishment was amazing when I finally crossed the finish line. Here are some things that you won’t be able to get from the video alone.
Solo running Tough Mudder
I was concerned about taking part in an OCR on my own. Having completed 4 of these in the past I know how important it is to have a good team or partner to help get you through, and there are lots of obstacles that involve teamwork. My plan going into the event was to just be overly helpful to everyone taking part, and in return hopefully some of this would be reciprocated. What I found was that in the event EVERYONE is your team mate. Whoever is in the vicinity automatically becomes your partner, so obstacles such as the Pyramid Scheme become one big team effort.
A lot of the other obstacles I was able to find ways to complete myself such as scrambling up the 13 ft high walls.
Prior to the event, I had been training for a half marathon and I’d been quickly ramping up the amount of distance I was running. As a result I was getting a lot of swelling in my knee from iliotibial band syndrome. Around the 8 mile mark my knee went and I thought I was going to have to forfeit the event. However I managed to hobble to my feet, and limped across the remaining 4 miles and tentatively completed the remaining obstacles. This largely influenced my song choice in the video above, as I kept repeating to myself that I wasn’t giving in!
The next event
Out of all the events I have completed, Tough Mudder was by far the hardest. Having shared my video on YouTube, I’ve had lots of people contact me saying they want to take part in the next one. So with a bit of foresight and some planning, I’m going to put a team together for 2017.