Essential Pittsburgh
5:50 pm
Fri August 1, 2014

Overcoming Physical And Mental Obstacles At Tough Mudder

Contestants hurdle one of the many obstacles at last year's Tough Mudder Pittsburgh
Contestants hurdle one of the many obstacles at last year's Tough Mudder Pittsburgh
Credit Tough Mudder

The Tough Mudder is a 10-12 mile race, filled with obstacles, and designed by members of the British Special Forces. It was created to test the body and mind.

Contestants swim in frigid water, climb across monkey bars covered in grease, and run through live wires. The race has been immensely popular in the United States and around the world.

In the next week the Tough Mudder race comes to Pittsburgh. We talked about how to prepare with Fittsburgh co-founder Joe Vennare and Pittsburgh Tough Mudder course manager John Barker.

“It’s bringing a military boot camp mentality to everyday people. You know, giving them a chance to maybe, break out of their day-to-day, or out of the office and do something out of the norm.” Vennare said.

The course will test every participant physically, Barker said, but the courses are also designed to help you overcome your mental weaknesses.

“The course is built around many things: it’s built around strength and stamina, and being able to use upper body, being able to use legs. It’s also about cardio, getting people out and getting them running. The last piece of this is all about confidence however. This is all about battling fears. Yes, we have electroshock therapy on our course, but that isn't about, ‘Am I strong enough to get through it’, that is, ‘I’m frightened of electricity but today I’m going to beat electricity and I'm going to get through it’… that's truly what this is all about… getting people away from their devices and getting them out there with their friends and working together and working as a team.”

The Tough Mudder will be held in St. Clairsville, Ohio, on August 16 & 17. You can register here.

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