By: Belerofonte Mar
Would you rather spend your Saturday at home in bed or out running through ice-cold water, tear gas, and 15,000 volt electric wires?
On Halloween morning I traveled to Temecula to take part in a race called Tough Mudder, a ten to twelve-mile military style obstacle course which is done in multiple locations around the world. As stated on the Tough Mudder website, “Tough Mudder puts camaraderie over finisher rankings and is not a timed race but a team challenge...” The day I woke up and got ready for the race I never could have expected what was in store.
The two-hour drive to Temecula was not that slow and we arrived fairly quickly. When we stopped at a red light we noticed a car that was following us since we got onto the highway and saw a Tough Mudder headband hanging from their rear view mirror. Soon we saw plenty of cars after the two-laned road we were on and we knew that we were heading in the right direction. As we got closer we saw a road sign that said: Tough Mudder Entrance.
After parking our car within the hundred others that were there we walked a good half mile to the Mudder Village, an area that Mudders can get their racing bibs and rest before their starting race time. After we put on our bibs me and my cousin headed to the warm-up zone where we met the Tough Mudder mascot, Couch T. Mudd. Once we finished warming up we jumped over a ledge to get to the real starting line, but before we started we heard a speech from a spokesperson.
As we started the race everyone was pumped with excitement. We ran past the starting line until we had to walk/crawl through the lake shore, which was a surprising challenge. By the end of the the obstacle, Swamp Stomp, we were crawling to the muddy shore. After a long stretch of jogging we got to the next obstacle, Kiss of Mud. Once we crawled under the barbed wire through the thick mud, my whole front side was covered in glittery mud, which helped me cool down.
One of the most difficult stretches in the Tough Mudder was miles 7-9 because this was mostly high hills that ended with many tough obstacles. The 13th obstacle was an Arctic Enema 2.0 which was a slide into a tub of ice-cold water. After hitting the water we had to swim to a small wall in between the pool so we needed to jump over it before finishing the obstacle. The instant shock was a lot to cope with as it felt like icy needles all over my body. Once we finished scaling a hill we went straight to another obstacle,Cry Baby. This new obstacle made its contestants crawl through tear gas. This obstacle seems easy at first, with only a bit of burning in your eyes, that was until you had to breath. Once one breath goes in you find it hard to take another so you try to move faster until you crawl out of the panels on the other side. But once you climb to the top of the next hill you see the other side. You see the 9 miles you have done and the last mile you need to complete.
The last mile and a half is packed with obstacles like Everest, the famous quarter pipe runners have to run up. After completing two more obstacles you get to the last one. The world-famous Electroshock Therapy. Runners have to go through 10,000 volts of electricity to get to the finish line, but this year Though Mudder put a “hot zone” in the obstacle which carries 1.5 more volts. As I stood at the edge of Electroshock Therapy I didn’t think about it and just ran. As I ran through I did not feel anything and started to doubt if it was even real, that was until I got hit with 15,000 volts on my back which made me jump straight up. After getting out of there I saw the finish line and ran for it.
Once you got to the finish line you felt something different. You feel like a whole new person then you were at the start. Everyone around you become a sort of family, they are the ones who went through the same obstacles and helped you all the way through. “People were out there to have fun and to just help each other” said Mrs. Callis, “I wouldn’t be able to do many obstacles on my own.” People love it so much that they come again and again, and become Tough Mudder Legionnaires. Brian Hill, a Tough Mudder Legionar, said “They [Tough Mudders] are great and motivational.” He has completed 7 Tough Mudders and plans to do more. So now the question is, will you be a Tough Mudder?
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