I completed, not my first obstacle course, but my first Tough Mudder over the weekend.

Despite being skeptical, I was really impressed. From the outset, everything had been thought of – from face marking, crowd surfing and human pyramid building in the initiation zone to the essential team photos at the end.

There is no doubt that Tough Mudder is a brand, complete with corporate partners, and a price tag, but they execute well. You feel part of a tribe. The clear mission they share at every opportunity unites all participants.

Team Work

If you want to shake up your weekend and do something a bit different, obstacle course events are great. Get a group of friends together and I guarantee you will laugh a lot. Joining Team52 is also a great way of meeting a whole load of new friends to do this kind of thing with.Team52 is a team building challenge platform that enables you and a team of friends to take on either 12, 26 or 52 challenges between you in a year. It’s your chance to try new things and show yourself what you’re capable of.

The team work that the Tough Mudder brand encourages is a huge attribute and the reason such a great range of people take part in a 12 mile, 29 obstacles assault course by choice.

We were a pretty spectacular team. Managing to be the sight to see, amongst many sights to see, we used the Mud Mile (twice) to fully encase ourselves. Sharing is caring they say. This time via sludgy hugs (the volunteers loved it) and singing.

The Course

Obstacles wise, the diverse mix covers climbing, wading, swinging, hanging, hauling and crawling so it’s a great work out – you also run 12 miles. Some obstacles are team work type fun, others are a little bit mean. But that’s the nature of an obstacle. The blue skyed September day was so warm that, can you believe it, I actually enjoyed the Arctic Enema ice bath.

My favourite was the King of the Swingers. Jumping off a platform to grab a bar, swing 5 metres above water and try to ring a bell (I missed it). The water swing had the right mix of fear, success, risk of failure and ultimately fun.

The Electroshock Therapy was suitably horrible. It was the last of the 29 obstacles, with the finish line in sight. I started by running through but after 3 shocks, I reverted to the slow and steady approach, which wasn’t much better. The shocks are not painful as such but are paralysing, to the point I actually hit the deck. Pretty sure I got struck again on the way down too.

Here it is worth highlighting that you can skip any obstacle – for health, fear or just because you can’t be bothered. Nobody is judging you and it is your decision.  Everyone took the course at their own pace. We ran, slipped and jumped between obstacles but I would say the grand majority were walking along having a great time. Small queues for obstacles are a nice break.

All in all a super fun day being outdoors and active.