Tough Mudder Half Yorkshire 2017 #thisgirlcan

I like to push myself and I tend to be pretty hard on myself. Learning to run last year by doing Couch to 5K was brilliant and I was absolutely amazed at what my body could do. I like a challenge, something to aim for and concentrate on. Going to university as a mature student was a huge intellectual test for me and I absolutely loved it there. Aside from Couch to 5K though, I haven't particularly challenged myself physically. That is until this weekend!

Tough Mudder start line

Back in December, I signed up for Tough Mudder (the half, not the full). We had B&B guests last year who did the full Tough Mudder on both the Saturday and the Sunday and they pretty much talked me into it. I worked hard training, concentrating on strength and doing HIIT and boxercise workouts on YouTube. I'm not as light as I used to be and I'm definitely bigger than I would like to be, so I was a little concerned about having to haul myself over such huge obstacles.

Tough Mudder Hero Walls

The night before Tough Mudder my husband woke to find me sitting bolt upright in bed saying "I don't know how to get over this one"! So it really was playing on my mind. On the day I had a little wobble, wondering why on earth I signed up for it, but as I looked around and saw all different sizes and shapes setting off, my fears started to disappear. I soon realised that adrenaline was going to help me get through. My friend and I had agreed that we would try absolutely every obstacle, but not to be upset if we couldn't get over them. I am so ridiculously proud that we managed every single one. Yes, we needed a hand or leg up on occasion, but we did it.

Tough Mudder Blockness monster
The obstacle I feared the most was Birth Canal, where there is over 100lbs of water resting on your back and you have to crawl though it. As it transpired, this was one of the ones that I found the easiest! The absolute hardest one was the obstacle I was most looking forward to, the Blockness Monster. You have to clamber over rotating slippery barriers, it involves an awful lot of teamwork, having to push, pull and roll your way through. The water was up to my neck, which made it very tricky, and I definitely didn't enjoy it as much as I thought it would.

Tough Mudder Pyramid Scheme

The Pyramid Scheme at the end of the course involved literally climbing up actual people in order to get to the top! It was tough and slippy, but again we managed to overcome it. The euphoria I felt at the end was like nothing I have ever experienced before. Even now, when I look at the video from the day (below), I'm not really sure that it is me doing it! The teamwork and camaraderie is amazing. No-one is left behind, but there's also no pressure if you don't feel up to an obstacle. I saw quite a few people simply skipping the obstacles and no-one was frustrated with them. 

Today is the day after. I'll admit that I struggled to pull my trousers up this morning and I squeal every time I push the top of the soap dispenser. My arms hurt like they never have before. My legs are thankfully fine, all those squats must have been worth it! Even though I ache everywhere, I genuinely wouldn't hesitate to do it all again. I might even take on the full course next year. Bring it on!