So wow.. what a weekend! I hadn’t planned on making the trip – too far and too expensive signing up last minute. Then it occurred to me… I wouldn’t running another TM until May 2015…. MAY. I emailed a friend/work colleague/TM-North West team-mate and asked if he’d realised this… he replied, simply saying he’d already signed up. Ok, game on… what’s a 4+ hour drive anyways…

I decided to volunteer on the Saturday, to run on the Sunday with the discount. I’ve volunteered before, and it was good fun. Once I’d organised a place a crash for the weekend, I was ready to roll. I would be running on my own. I would have loved to have run with any of my team-mates, but I was also looking forward to a new challenge for my 4th TM. To quote one of my favourite songs on my motivational playlist…

It’s time to see what I can do
To test the limits and break through

Yes, it’s Disney’s Frozen. Time to see what I can do…!

Volunteering on the Saturday was fun. I was at the water station at 8 miles – cutting up the Met-RX bars. If you want to feel good about yourself – give exhausted people chocolate (the bars were ‘Cookie Crunch’ flavour) after running 8 miles – you get a lot of love! I was also able to see some of the guys I ran TM North West with – sounds like they ran a great race despite some injuries late in the day… well done team!

Saturday night I felt well fuelled and excited to run. But I was nervous. The first time I ran Tough Mudder in 2013 (my first OCR) I didn’t sleep very well – nervous excitement (mainly nervous). Saturday night felt kind of similar. I just kept reminding myself that I could do it. I’ve done it all before, can do it again. Just this time I’d be on my own!

Finally it was time for me to get up – standard eggs for breakfast and off I went. Feeling tired but ready.

So.. I’ve received some feedback on my posts so far…. I quote… “The fact that you’re a beast is pretty well hidden. stop being shy and channel the inner you… you know the one… she comes out on race day… she bullies her way under / over / through obstacles and always take an opportunity for a gun show pose”…. so here I go…. I imagine Tough Mudder was pretty sore on Monday from how hard I smashed it….. I felt great – my kit worked great – my Mudclaws were awesome, my Under Armour coldgear kept me warm enough, and my change of shoes got me up Extreme Everest first time (I kind of felt like I cheated??). I think it had something to do with getting Walk The Plank and Arctic Enema out of the way early-doors. 3 miles in, and I’d conquered my 2 worst obstacles.

The log carry seemed really easy after all the carries at Spartan. I did drop it though… but I was running! Just the Tip gets easier each time – TM, you need to up the difficulty for next year! Pryamid Scheme was lots of fun again… being on my own was fine. People were super friendly and jumping at the chance to help a lone runner! In fact, I had to tell people not to help at some points.. eg coming down from the walls!

Awful Arctic…

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Here I am 8 miles in, where I volunteered on the Saturday…

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Legionnaires loop overhang wall…

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Fire in your hole. Still scary for me even on my third go! Again, the volunteers at the top were amazing.

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You can always rely on Electroshock for quality photographs! I think this is the most I’ve ever been stung in Electroshock. Were the wires denser than usual??

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And breath… finished! In just under 2 and a half hours. Last minute mud splatter to the face due to a fall at the end!

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With TM.. time really isn’t important to most people, but as I said, as it was my 4th.. I was curious to see how I could do.. here’s my Garmin report… Gotta love all the dog-legging!

GARMIN

 

I was pretty pleased with my time, and without rushing any obstacles at the expense of taking in the TM atmosphere.

Big thanks to Tough Mudder and Paul Simcox – who sorted out a problem I had with my registration (due to me being an idiot!), and issued a refund so quickly. You’re a gentleman, Paul!

Thanks Liz and family for their awesome hospitality, and thanks Liz for coming and supporting me, and for the photos!

Doesn’t it look fun…! Time to get training for next year everyone! Check out my first attempt at a GoPro race video… All obstacles except Cage Crawl and Pyramid Scheme. Remember that sequences are significantly shortened in the video…. !