Whistler hosts the world’s toughest obstacle course
Formerly published in The Other Press. June 4 2013
By Elliot Chan, Staff Writer
On June 22 and June 23, participants in Whistler Village will have an opportunity to show just what they’re made of in the annual Tough Mudder event. Modeled after the British Special Forces training camps, the 10-12 mile long obstacle course tests mental and physical strength and stamina, and challenges people with common fears, such as fire, water, and heights.
“It’s a great, well-organized event,” said former participant Ryan Mair. “It forces you to challenge yourself and more so, inspires you to help others overcome their challenges. As soon as you think you’re almost done, you’re not. Tons of fun and would recommend it to all levels of athletes or people looking to lead a healthier lifestyle.”
The obstacles include everything from climbing walls, running through fire, to minor electrocution. What some might consider torturous, others see as an opportunity to create lasting memories and build camaraderie to achieve a sole goal of completing the course.
“Out of all the obstacles I’ve heard about in Tough Mudder the ice dunk is the one that concerns me the most,” said Tough Mudder newcomer Cody Beatch. “It’s going to take some big cojones to submerge yourself into near-freezing water.”
While most wise participants will have spent many months preparing for the grueling event, most would agree that there are certain parts of the obstacle course that cannot be anticipated. “I’m in above-average shape,” said first-time participant, Michael Ramos, “but there are some stuff you can’t train for. The mental side worries me a little, because that is mind over matter stuff. You think you are prepared for anything driving up to Whistler, but we’ll see how I react once I get there.”
Registration for the event is going until June 17, so if you want to grab a team, join an existing one, or run the course as an individual, you better pick up the pace. Then again, preregistration for 2014 Tough Mudder is already open. If you feel like you need more training and want to commit to something next summer, log onto their website at http://toughmudder.com.
The event will also include a post-party and award show with live music, contests, and the carnival of tough. If you are unprepared for such a trying event, but still want to witness it, spectators may buy tickets for $20 online or $40 onsite.
Whether you have something to prove or you’re just seeking a quality way to past the time, Tough Mudder is a growing event that is attracting and inspiring people across 20 nations.