On November 12, 2011 I signed my life away.
During our junior year of college, two of my girlfriends thought we were complete hot shots, who liked to compete against each other (but with each other), and push each other’s limits. We joked about signing up for a Tough Mudder, but always chickened out.
We watched this video and basically said, “Oh hell no, I’m not getting shocked!” BUT then we watched it again and again, and signed up on a whim. We created a team called the Bumblebees!
The day came, and I was never more terrified for anything in my life. Signing the death waiver made the reality of how serious this was almost too intense. Who ever thought they would be participating in an event that could possibly take their life?
I COULD DIE FROM THIS!
If being completely terrified to get hurt or die wasn’t enough, we got asked to be interviewed for the 2011 Englishtown Official Trailer. If you know me, I do not speak in front of people, let alone a camera for the entire world. (How am I teacher? I know, I know!) So yes, we answered questions, laughed a lot, and obviously didn’t make the cut.
Before the race begins, everyone takes the M U D D E R PLEDGE. The pledge couldn’t have been more true. The camaraderie atmosphere is what make the tough mudder addicting. In all the fear, commotion, freezing cold temperatures, difficulties, and lack of arm strength, the camaraderie of everyone involved is how one survives to the end. When you come to a giant Berlin wall and have no idea how you are going to make it over, a random gentleman would come and basically toss you over the wall, without even questioning anything. When you would have panic attacks about a certain obstacle (like all of them), there was always someone there to talk you down and help you through it. Everyone doing the tough mudder was one big team. NO (wo)MAN WAS LEFT BEHIND!
The temperatures for this course were not ideal at all. And wearing a costume might have been cute, and got us noticed, but it did not help the intense cold of the morning. Right off the bat, we had to jump into a dumpster full of ice water, swim under a wooden board, and come out the other side. You had no idea how deep the wooden board went, and if you are like me, I am terrified of being under water when I can’t see. We jumped in together, and I remember going as deep as I could possibly go, and just swimming my ass off. BUT nothing can prepare you for shocking affect the freezing cold water plays on your entire body. Once under water, I could no longer feel my body, or even myself breathing. Complete fear takes over, and you don’t think you are going to make it out. When I reached the top of the water, I remember screaming or someone to pull me out. From that moment on, our body temperatures stayed completely frozen. Our costumes remained soaked and the temperatures outside were around 30 degrees.
Here I am at my second Tough Mudder, because I am an idiot, standing at the ice dumpsters remembering how badly it felt, and not wanting to jump in. We are alone, because I literally stood there for 2o minutes trying to convince myself to just jump, but not being able to. It got to the point where the crowd started cheering us on, and we had to jump. I didn’t want to be known as the girl who didn’t jump! 🙂
There is nothing more gratifying than completing something that terrifies the life out of you. Not only once, but twice! The second time around was even scarier than the first, because you know what to expect. But at the end of the day, I became a new person. I formed a bond with my friends that can never be broken. We relied on each other. We carried each other. We survived together.
My second Tough Mudder was a graduation present to myself. We signed up to run the race the day after we FINALLY graduated with our degrees in teaching. What better way to celebrate than to sign yet another death waiver? ||| I could think of a few things! 🙂 |||This time the race was in PA, during the spring, so the temperatures were much better.
I ended up completing this race by myself, and joining another team. AGAIN, the camaraderie at these events is what gets you through! My experience at this Tough Mudder was so different from the first, that to really paint you a picture of what Tough Mudder’s are like is hard. No words could prepare you for what to expect. You just have to take it obstacle by obstacle, step by step. But earning those orange headbands is something you will NEVER FORGET! If you want to challenge yourself mentally, and sign your first death waiver, than sign up. You won’t regret it. 🙂 And you will most likely survive!
Thanks for checking out another one of my
Friday Firsts! If you have ever done a Tough Mudder, please share your experiences. It always makes for a good story! 🙂