Obstacle Racing, Ultrarunning, Other Thangs…

2.12.12 Georgia Tough Mudder Recap

Lessons from The Tough Mudder

Basic Stats:
Date: February 12, 2012
Time: 9:40 A.M.
Location: Washington, Georgia
Starting temperature: 20 degrees
Highest temp of the race:  38 degrees
Be prepared: All month, the weather called for temperatures on our event day to be in the 50s. By the night before the race, the forecast called for temperatures to be in the 20’s. We needed to make massive changes in gear and attire. Making these purchases the night before made us very prepared for the frigid temperatures the next day. We saw many other Mudders not as prepared. While we had an amazing time and felt great, some people had to drop out because of hypothermia.  Others were just having a miserable time.

Don’t do it alone: Part of the Tough Mudder pledge is “I put teamwork and camaraderie before my course time”. One of the most rewarding parts of the event is helping others and having others help you. To see the smile on another runner’s face after helping them do something they were struggling with is priceless. To give thanks for someone that helped you is equally life affirming. When was the last time you put someone’s well-being in front of your own personal gain?

Adapt and change on the fly: At our Mudder, we had a team of ten. At the beginning, we set out to have everyone start and finish together. An hour into the event, we realized that waiting on so many teammates in the freezing temperatures was taking much longer than predicted, and given the circumstances, was not sustainable for the long duration of the race. We decided as a group that as long as no one did it alone, we were still serving everyone and the best for the team. So we split into three groups. These “mini-teams” helped each other along the course and pushed each other when necessary. After the finish line, we all met up again and no one felt slighted and our team was still as strong as ever.

Stretch Yourself: There is no logical reason to run twelve miles in twenty degree weather, let alone run through mud, barbed wires, or jump into a large dumpster filled with ice. Doing things WAY outside of our comfort zone was a way to push ourselves further than we ever thought possible. As tough as the conditions were physically, it is the mental aspects of an event like this where you learn you are capable of so much more than you thought you could be.

Here is a photo of part of our proud but very chilly team shortly after we finished.

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