Tyler Robbins Fitness

B.Sc. Biochemistry, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS), Certified CrossFit Trainer (CCFT/CF-L3), USA Weightlifting Level 1

Day 132 - Tough Mudder Tactics: Mud Mile

There seems to be a slight discrepancy in what obstacle I actually competed in at Tough Mudder Toronto. The differences? Not a whole lot, but allow me to explain. The obstacle on the Tough Mudder course map, not to mention the sign leading up to the obstacle on the course had it titled as "Mud Mile".

Slosh through up to a mile of waist-deep sludge as you try not to lose your shoes in the mud. Balance and coordination are required if you want to make it through this obstacle without face-planting… but what’s the fun in that? Real Mudders eat mud for breakfast. On some courses, Mudders will encounter obstructions throughout Mud Mile that require them to fully submerge in the mud to slosh onward.

By reading the descriptions, however, it turns out, the obstacle in question at Tough Mudder Toronto was actually more similar to "Dirty Ballerina".

So again, what is the big difference? Not a whole lot, either way, you are trudging through mud. To be honest, I have a bit of a fear for sinking sand, or in this case, sinking mud, so I was glad to see that the obstacle as actually more similar to "Dirty Ballerina".

As you see in the description, there are 4-foot wide 'trenches' dug out, and your goal is to leap over a series of them. However, I ran the 9:30am heat on Sunday morning, so there was already 14k+ people who clamoured through this obstacle the day before. So, instead of nice, square, dug-out trenches, the obstacle was more of a series of muddy mounds that had been worn down and rounded off from all of the folks the day before.

This made it essentially impossible to leap over each trench. Instead, I climbed up and over each mound separating the trenches. The trenches were full of water and mud, so I ended up getting quite muddy by the end of this obstacle.

Because this turned into more of a climbing event, rather than a 'leaping' event for me, total-body strength was definitely required to get in and out of multiple trenches. Each trench, I would say ended up being well over 7-8 feet wide at the widest points, and at least 4 or 5 feet deep. It took a bit of patience and coordination (and strength) to climb out of each trench, as they trenches were deep, and the slopes were muddy.

In summary, you may want to change your strategy on this obstacle depending on when you are timed to run the course. If you are one of the first heats on the first day of competition, you may be able to get away with 'leaping' over each trench. If, however, you race later in the day on day 1, or race at all on day 2, this may become more of a climbing obstacle rather than trying to jump over each trench.

Quote of the day:
“I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it.”
- Pablo Picasso