The original challenge to attempt Tough Mudder Scotland came from Eoan back in February of this year. I knew at the time that it would be the most difficult physical challenge I’d ever attempted, but I thought it was a great goal to set for the day after I turned 40. By the time Eoan and all the other folk he’d invited had dropped out of the event, it was just me and my mate Campbell who would be facing the challenge.
Although I was training for the Bealach Beag, in the months before Tough Mudder Scotland I watched countless YouTube videos of the events held all around the world. A high percentage of the time I’d see ridiculously fit individuals push themselves through and over an insane collection of obstacles under perfect blue skies complete with relentless sunshine.
It looked fantastic and I couldn’t wait to get off the bike and get on with lifting weights and building up my running legs!
From last year’s experience, I know I can cycle a hundred miles. I might not have been as fast as I’d like, but I was able to put myself through it and my recovery time was pretty good. This year as part of my challenges I signed up for a few tougher cycling events in addition to Pedal for Scotland in September, just to raise the bar a little and keep me motivated to train harder through the year.
However, I’m not a huge fan of the long endurance rides. I don’t think spending six or seven hours in the saddle is as much fun as a manageable two or three hour ride that leaves plenty of time in the day for other things. My first ride of this year is a 45 miler in May that I’m quite looking forward to. Training for a 45 mile ride with some tough climbs is doable when you have a busy family life, while training for 100 mile rides isn’t quite as practical.
To that end I decided to limit number of cycling events I signed up for so I don’t end up in a constant onslaught of training for and participating in events. This left the door open up for some other fitness challenge, though, and when my old college mate Eoan suggested doing the Tough Mudder, I had to have a serious think about it.