6 Months and Tough Mudder Charlotte

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Cade turned 6 months old on November 2nd! Woo! He’s definitely a mover and a shaker-crawling, frog hopping, spinning, rolling, toppling over when he gets bored with sitting-and all with a string of shrieks, squeals, babbles, and nonsense. Super cute. Although recently he’s started going, “Dadadadabadababadada” and that is less cute, because no matter how much I encourage him, “mamamamamamememememamama” isn’t happening yet. Hrmph. Solid foods are a hit, so much so that he cries every time I have to clean him up and take away the remnents. I mean, he gets seriously miffed. Sweet Potatoes remain the hands down favorite, although Carrots are climbing in his esteem and Brocolli is fun, too. Avocado and Banana, however, have been firmly rejected so far. We’ve got squash, apples, and yellow bell peppers to try this week.

 

Ok, so what you’ve REALLY wanted to hear about is the Tough Mudder, I know. So, Brian and I ended up being a two person team signed up for Tough Mudder Charlotte on Nov 3rd. My training = 6 months of hardcore sleep deprivation. Brian’s training = running Mountain Masochist 50 miler the day before. Needless to say, we weren’t exactly in top notch shape at the start, but we figured we’d still give it a shot. I was really nervous, but less about the Mudder and more about leaving Cade with Grandma K and Auntie Jessica and Uncle Joe for close to 8 hours. I was so worried he’d be a cranky fusspot! My worry was needless, Cade did fantastic according to all reports. Back to Brian and I…

For the uninitiated, the Tough Mudder is basically a 10-12 mile run with a bunch of obstacles and hazards involving copious amounts of mud and water scattered throughout the course.  http://toughmudder.com/events/charlotte-2013/  You can explore the link for videos, photos, and more info. I was expecting to be sore and muddy and bruised by the end, I was not expecting to have so much fun! The first obstacle was climbing in mud under barbed wire, and on the other side my legs, elbows, and bottom of my shirt were pretty mucky. I turn to Brian and he’s got a bit of mud on his knees and elbows. I was so mad! I told him that there is NO WAY he is going to be allowed to get through the Tough Mudder barely dirty! He said, “Well, my shins are kindof muddy…” Typical Brian, he WOULD be the cleanest Mudder at the event. Thankfully, the next few obstacles got us both thoroughly plastered, he had no way of weasling out of the muddiness. Unfortunately, the November weather was sunny, but bitingly brisk, with a breeze that wasn’t exactly balmy. I was doing OK, even after the Arctic Enema (huge tub full of freezing ice water you have to jump in, dive under a partition, and climb out the other side) but after getting fully dunked around mile 7-8 when I wasn’t able to complete the “By The Tip” obstacle (crossing a wall by holding on to a two by four with just your hands and shimmying across. If you lose your grip you drop into water.) I was shaking so badly I could barely jog. I grabbed one of the foil blankets at the next aid station to try and keep the wind off me, but it didn’t help all that much. So we bypassed the rest of the water obstacles (but since it was the end of the course there weren’t that many left) and just did the climbs and the wall and such. Kinda bummed, because I would’ve liked to at least attempt a few of the last obstacles-not the monkey bars though, that one I would’ve just jumped into the water and saved myself the fall-but I was definitely turning a lovely shade of blue under my coat of mud and I no longer had any feeling in my hands or feet. The last obstacle where you go though electric wires I managed not to get zapped, but Brian was curious and so at the end he touched one with his forearm. He said it was “a serious jolt” and he felt it in his bones. Kinda glad I didn’t get shocked…

We made it! I was limping at the end, my hips were killing me, and my shoulders had been wrenched getting up “Everest” (A big, gently sloping wall you try to run up, grab the top, and haul yourself over….or grab the people’s hands hanging down and THEY haul you over-which is what I did) but I got that bright orange headband and Brian and I rinsed off with the hoses shaking so badly we had volunteers eyeing us with concern and trying to usher us into the heated changing rooms. We declined, knowing we weren’t going to get warm until we got into dry clothing (at the car) so we shivered our way up the hill, took a picture, and took turns stripping out of our wet stuff behind a towel.

I have two enormous bruises on my legs, one on my right thigh, the other on my left inner thigh, both are about the size of my hand from wrist to finger tip and just as wide. My knees are a mess, my elbows not much better, I have bruises on my shoulders, under my arms, on my shins and forearms, on my belly and ribcage, and scrapes up and down my legs. Brian did better, although he has some pretty spectacular bruising under his arms from hoisting himself up over the walls after boosting me over. All in all, we’re a mess, but I would do it again…just not in Novemeber. I’m still kindof riding a weird high from it, I really had a good time trying to do all those obstacles. Some of them weren’t exactly hard, they were just muddy, and others definitely took some strength and skill to navigate…but if you didn’t “make” the obstacle you just got dunked in water and could keep going, so not feeling like you can complete EVERYTHING is not a good excuse to not do one of these events. Besides, everyone helps everyone else out! There was no way I could’ve made it up over the walls by myself like Brian did, but he boosted me over, and if he hadn’t been there there were several other Mudders boosting anyone that needed it before jumping over themselves.

Seriously people, it was a blast! I would recommend this to anyone. As far as fitness level needed, I’ll admit Brian and I are probably in decent shape despite our handicaps at the outset of this event, but as long as you can comfortably walk/jog ten miles and can lift 50 lbs I’d say go for it! I’m looking at you, my EMS friends, you lift people heavier than that all day and night, get the ten miles down and there is NO REASON to not try a Tough Mudder. 🙂

 

Now I gotta go check on my munchkin….

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