I am a Tough Mudder

October 26, 2011


It wasn’t easy (or graceful), but after 6 hours and 8 minutes, I crossed the finish line of the Tough Mudder held in Wintergreen, VA on October 23rd, 2011.

When I started down this path in May, my focus was on running. As I chronicled on here for the first three weeks, my run time improved slightly, but I was missing my goals of being able to run four miles because travel and uncooperative heat in the evenings. What I didn’t report was shortly after the six week period, I injured my hip, sidelining my efforts to go out and run for about a month. By the end of July, I returned to running, but cut back to running just a few nights during the week to allow my body to recover, and I switched to doing more indoor work with the P90X and Insanity workout programs.

It was the latter that I feel helped me more in this event, since it focused more on cardio, which in turn improved my endurance level. Much of the event dealt with walking/running up and down steep grades, requiring more than just leg strength. In fact, my back was more tired than my legs on the Death March up the ski slope, which I don’t think straight run-training would have prevented, let alone improved.

In the end, I completed the challenge with the help of my coworker. In the final two months, we trained together in the evenings, changing up our routines each night. We worked on upper body, legs, and cardio during the final weeks with the focus on being able to tackle all obstacles (both the fixed structures as well as the distance between them). I think together we were more productive than if we tried this on our own, and to that end, I give him a lot of credit for me being able to complete the event.

On to the stats!

Weight: When I started, I weighted 202 pounds. While my weight did drop down to 193 pounds, I weighed 195 on the day of the event. That’s a net drop of 7 pounds . . . something that I have not done during any of the prior six-week challenges.

Chest: I dropped from 40.67 inches to 39.67 inches since May; a reduction of one inch. To be honest, I am a bit surprised by this because of all the upper body weight training I did. I thought they numbers would be much closer.

Stomach: Conversely, I thought the loss around my stomach would have been greater. I started out at 39.42 inches, but ended up only at 38.75 inches (a net loss of 0.67 inches). Maybe I didn’t do enough ab work?

Waist: One change I easily noticed was the drop around my waist. I lost 1.17 inches during all this training, falling from 38.17 inches to 37 inches. If you recall, my waist measurements were bouncing all over the place during the six-week challenge. While those fluctuations occurred, my pants usually fit the same. Now . . . they are looser, requiring the use of a belt.

Glutes: My biggest disappointment was the glutes. I started out at 42.67 inches, but ended up only at 42.42 inches (a loss of just 0.25 inches). I would have thought with all the leg work (not to mention the loss around the waist) that my butt would also shrink at a similar rate. I guess I can’t complain, since a decrease is a decrease.

Well, that’s it for this challenge. We’ll see if we can keep the body in this current position until the next challenge comes around.