Here’s a short video of my experience. I didn’t get any footage at the end of the event as I was too busy being cold. It turns out, I may have needed a bit more mindset and neoprene to remember I was actually making a video 😂
For the past 2 years, I have headed to the annual Winter Tough Guy, The Original Obstacle Race in Wolverhampton to marshal on the course. Despite loving my role, each year they’d be a small part of me wishing I was running the race. I wanted to feel the exhaustion of the obstacles, debilitating pain of the cold water and experience those horrible water tunnels! Could they really be as bad as everyone said?
The morning of the race, Mr Mouse’s son persuaded me to swap my marshalling bib for a Front Squad bib and run in the race. Sugar lumps! How could I say no to that??
With only a pair of yoga leggings, thermal hiking top, a ‘stolen’ Tough Guy t-shirt, a borrowed pair of oversized neoprene gloves, trainers that were too small for me, a thin buff to keep my head warm (questionable) and a body full of nerves and adrenaline, I was as prepared as 3 hours would allow me.
For those who are unfamiliar with Tough Guy, check it out on YouTube. The original obstacle course, which began in 1987, is notorious for being one of the toughest obstacle races in Europe with 20-25% of entrants not finishing it’s gruelling course.
Standing in the starting pack with 5,000 other people, I was so nervous as I hadn’t run properly in 1.5 years due to my rowing training and was worried I may not finish due to my poor clothing choices and the cold weather. Usually, for an event like this, I’d wear a full neoprene outfit, so this was winging it to the max even by my standards!
I was ready to step outside of my comfort zone.
I am a firm believer a positive mindset can get me through tough events and circumstances. And I hoped, in this case, it would also keep warm.
The mud, the trenches, the obstacles and the cold climate really made Tough Guy live up to its name.
The course was relentless and brutal.
It was the toughest event of my life and I LOVED IT!!!
I’m so grateful to have had the opportunity to run the event, proving although it’s great to plan and prepare, the body and mind can do so much more than we first think.