By Katherine Gittman
Meadow Event Park hosted the Tough Mudder event this past weekend on June 10 and 11 where 13,000 people participated. As an intense and rigorous race, Tough Mudder challenges many to go beyond what any other race would require and take part in a course filled with different obstacles including swimming and running through pools of mud, rope courses, and other challenges that requires teamwork in the process.
For the past four years, Meadow Event Park has hosted Tough Mudder and will continue to hold the event in 2018 for its fifth consecutive year. “The property was initially contacted by the company and negotiated use of property for the event,” says Marlene Pierson-Jolliffe, the VP of Operations at Meadow Event Park. “Tough Mudder coordinates the event and simply “rents” our property. We collaborate on layouts and specific locations for certain obstacles to ensure they don’t conflict with our infrastructure or other events happening at our facility,” shares Pierson-Jolliffe.
Unlike any other race, the Tough Mudder pushes participants to step out of their comfort zone and take on a different type of fitness challenge. Instead of calling it a race, the Tough Mudder consists of different event types that contain obstacles that requires teamwork and challenges them physically and mentally above and beyond a normal race would.
According to the Tough Mudder website, there are many different Tough Mudder challenges that one can partake in. Some of the challenges include the Tough Mudder 5K, Tough Mudder Half, Tough Mudder, Tougher Mudder, Toughest Mudder, and even the Mini Mudder for children who want to participate in an adventurous challenge. Depending on the challenge selected, the events range from five to ten miles of mud courses with 13 to 20 types of obstacles. If one were to select the Toughest Mudder challenge, they would partake in an eight-hour obstacle course challenge through midnight until 8 a.m. Although this particular event did not take place at Meadow Event Park this year, there are select locations throughout the United States that holds the Toughest Mudder event. For events for the kids like the Mini Mudder, the challenge includes a one-mile mud run obstacle course that gives the kids a little bit of an adventure and a chance to work with other kids that will help them gain team-building skills.
Teams can register for the event and then from then on, will be able to participate together throughout the event. “Throughout the day, there are “waves” of participants that leave the starting gate to navigate the entire course. They walk and run, and are challenged by a wide variety of obstacles including climbing walls, mud crawls, strength challenges, etc.,” shares Pierson-Jolliffe.
“After finishing, most participants want to hose off and have a cool refreshment. Most donate their muddy shoes to Tough Mudder who “recycles” the shows and donates to foreign aid organizations after they have been washed,” shares Jolliffe-Pierson.
Before anyone participates in any Tough Mudder challenge, the Tough Mudder website shares different types of training that an individual can do in order to condition for the race. For each type of obstacle, participants can check out the types of obstacles the Tough Mudder provides and see how they can condition based on each obstacle. The website also gives advice on what types of apparel participants will need to wear in order to take on the challenges safely and productively along with different types of boot camps participants can condition with.