The similarities and differences
- The number of obstacles depends of the length of the race
- More competitively orientated (racers wear a timing chip)
- Obstacles are designed around physical strength, athleticism, balance and mental grit
- 3 categories of races:
- Open (for your average joe or those looking to have fun)
- Competitive (not quite an Elite racer but still wants to compete)
- Elite (the best of the best)
- Medal and Tshirt earned at the end of each race
- 4 distances:
- Sprint (56km)
- Super (1216km)
- Ultra Beast (4452+km)
- Military style designed obstacle Looking to push your mental stamina and physical strength
- Focused around teamwork moreover the lone wolf approach
- 2 categories of races:
- Half Mudder (810km)
- Tough Mudder (1620km)
- No timing chips, you go until you finish
- Extra obstacles provided for the Mudder Legionnaires (those who’ve completed a Tough Mudder before)
- Guaranteed around 2030 obstacles per course
- Tshirt and beer earned after completing each race
- Obstacles are of varying difficulty for all ages and experience levels
- 16+ obstacles per race
- Timed It’s competitive but encourages teamwork and having fun above all else
- There will be mud… LOTS of mud
- T shirt earned after each race
- 2 lengths of races:
- Mud Hero Original (6km)
- Mud Hero Ultra (10km)
How to Train For an Obstacle Course Race
Your first ever obstacle course race is 3 months away. How do you train to prepare for such an event? We will focus on 4 categories:
Whether or not you’ve ever taken a step in the gym, you’ve probably heard a little about the 3 major compound movements in weightlifting: The Bench Press, Squat and Deadlift.
The word compound means consisting of several parts, and in this case, these several parts are your muscles. These 3 exercises are going to recruit the bulk of every major muscle group to complete each movement.
So if you are a veteran of pumping iron or just a newbie, everyone can greatly benefit from a classic 5×5 training program consisting of these 3 exercises.
TIP: Perform these exercises with proper technique! DON’T LOAD UP THE WEIGHTS.
Although there’s no rule stating that you can’t walk from one obstacle to the next, it’s certainly not ideal, this is where that good ol’ cardiovascular endurance comes into play. This doesn’t mean that you have to spend 90 minutes running on the treadmill or running in a circle on the local track. You can train your peak cardio levels by performing sprinting and jogging intervals. It takes half the time and is twice the benefit of a steady paced jog.
Try this quick circuit to push your cardiovascular health to the next level:
5 mins of jogging/dynamic stretching warm up 2 x 20 second sprint/40 second jog
- x 30 second sprint/30 second jog 4 x 40 second sprint/20 second jog 2 x 30 second sprint/30 second jog 2 x 20 second sprint/40 second jog 5 mins of cool down
Calisthenics is kind of a fancy word for bodyweight exercises. If you’ve ever watched gymnastics then you have witnessed calisthenics in action. However, the goal isn’t to make you into a world class gymnast, the goal is to increase your upper body strength so you hold your own weight when it comes to face off against the monkey bars, rope climbing, or wall climbing obstacles.
- exercises to focus on to improve core and upper body strength are:
Pushups Pullups Planks
Progress in these 3 categories by pushing yourself to FAILURE each time
Start off with performing 2 sets to failure on each exercise and progressing weekly by adding in more sets or increasing the intensity.
HIIT or High Intensity Interval Training is a great way to get the best of both worlds when it comes to weight training and cardiovascular training. The idea of HIIT is to perform a series of exercises in a circuit fashion with rest only coming once all the exercises in the circuit have been completed. It’s a quick and efficient way to get maximum training done in as little time as possible.
Try this quick bodyweight circuit out and you’ll soon find out exactly what we’re talking about:
15 bodyweight squats
30 high knees REPEAT 3X
30 split squat jumps (15 each leg) 50 mountain climbers
REST 1 minute