The Tough Mudder this year did not disappoint, the event was tough, muddy and a lot of fun!
The weekend got off to an interesting start Friday night on the drive to Vermont, there were no street lights and it was super foggy, and high beams actually made it worse! The roads were windy and it was impossible to see more than 10 feet in front of you. My co-pilot Danielle and I made it safely to the development we were staying in, but missed the turn for our rented condo. I turned around in a driveway but in backing up went off the road and got my car stuck.
Only two tires were on the ground, and one of them was just spinning, digging us into a deeper mess. The car was slightly tilted, but we didn’t realize how much until Danielle opened the passenger side door and fell out of the car. We couldn’t see our surroundings but could hear water in the background, it wasn’t rushing but it wasn’t just a tricky either. There was only a moment of panic before we both burst into laughter.
While I was on the phone with AAA, two guys stopped and offered to help. After about 10 minutes of trying, which included a “maybe we can lift the car”* and an attempt, they got the car free (and came dangerously close to driving it into a lake).
Please note that they did not get the car free by lifting it. While that would have been a great story, they “simply” put a rock under one of the tires so it would catch. And yes, I let them continue to assist even after they suggested lifting the car*.
As we made our second attempt to find our condo, Danielle commented “I hope that’s not an omen for the weekend”.
Turns out it was.
Things got tough during the race, but in the end everything worked out fine. Everyone on our team made it through the race, and besides some scrapes and bruises no one got hurt. Which was my biggest fear going into the race.
I can’t say that this year’s race was easier, but I can say that the Tough Mudder is much easier to do when you can breathe properly the entire time. Being able to take a full breathe makes a huge difference. I’m honestly not sure at the end of the race if I was more excited that I was in one piece or that I had finished.
It was a lot warmer this year which made the water obstacles and the glacier less horrible. Due to the mild winter we had there was no snow on the ground, which made it less slippery when running, but a lot muddier. So instead of sliding around the mountain, your shoes were getting stuck in at least 6 inches of mud with every step.
Just to get to the starting line this year you had to climb a berlin wall and within the first mile you had already gone through an ice bath. I didn’t remember the “Electric Eel” from the previous year, it was probably the most interesting addition to the course. This obstacle had you army crawling through a pool of water with wires hanging overhead. I got shocked 3 or 4 times going through the pool. The shocks weren’t too bad, it basically feels as though you are getting hit with an elastic or someone is flicking you.
It took us a little over 4 hours to complete the course (vs. 3:40 last year), once again we ran most of the course, the biggest difference being that there was back up at a couple of the obstacles. We waited about 15-20 minutes at least once to complete an obstacle. This was super annoying but allowed us (way too much time) to complain, stretch and catch our breath.
This year they added barrels of hay which you had to climb over as you run through the live wires at the end. I may or may not have face planted after getting a small shock and tripping over the hay.
We stuck around for a bit after we finished soaking in the atmosphere and enjoying a few celebratory beers!
I’ll try to get some pictures up after I get all the dirt out of my ears, hopefully this weekend. If you’re interested, last year’s recap can be found here.
*Suggesting to lift the car would have made more sense if I drove a mini copper. However, I do not.