1. Tough Mudder
Probably the most recognisable in the list is Tough Mudder! The course is roughly 18Km and consists of lots of mud (obviously), up to 20 different obstacles, 500,000 litres of mud, and up to 40 tonnes of ice. In between obstacles contestants must run through the muddy terrain, encounter obstacles of all different varieties; some include trekking through ice water, and others involve climbing up and over muddy terrain. The final obstacle of any tough Mudder race is Everest 2.0; a 15ft slope that only the fittest contestants can scale. Fancy the challenge? At the end you’ll be greeted with a participants t-shirt (the fundamental item of any event), a finisher head band, an ice-cold beer, a massage (if you fancy queuing for half an hour) and action photos of you and your team.
2. Ironman 70.3
Originally called ‘the half ironman’ the course was renamed to the Ironman 70.3 to symbolise the number of miles in the race. (113km) The gruelling race begins with a 1.2 mile swim, immediately followed by a 56 mile cycle, and just for a laugh they throw in a half marathon (13.1 miles) at the end before you can cross the finish line! Bare in mind that all of that is done in the same wetsuit the athlete’s began in. And if that wasn’t enough, they have cut off times for each event! The average cut of time for the swim is 1 hour 10 minutes, the cycle is 4 hours and the run must be completed within 8 hours of the finial wave begging the swimming. This gruelling course takes the average contestant 5-7 hours to tackle. Think you have what it takes? Check out the website for more information on how to register.
3. The Spartan Race
The Spartan Race is split into three separate races, each of which are challenging in their own way. There is the Spartan sprint which is a short 5km packed with 20 different obstacles. There is the Spartan super, which is 13 km filled with 25+ obstacles (this is the middle distance course). Finally there is the Spartan beast for the toughest of athletes. This course tests people endurance, grit and determination across 20km and 30+ obstacles! Like the sound of it? Check out the Spartan website.
4. The GORUCK challenge
Originally started back in 2010 as a marketing campaign for their American made rucksack, this challenge is very patriotic if you’re from the USA. It makes the list for its concept of Military style fitness with large weighted rucksack. Most challenges last between 10-12 hours, after 15-20 miles of climbing, carrying heavy objects, telephone poles, and sometimes each other. And to add that little bit more they fill your rucksack with bricks (how many depends on your weight). Feeling patriotic? Give it ago!
5. Nuclear Blackout
This challenge is a little different as it has a time limit of two hours! The idea is for contestants to run the obstacle packed 5km course as many times as they can in 2 hours. The person who completes the most laps of the course in the 2 hours is the winner! Simple right? Not so fast; there’s a catch… The race takes place at night, and the course has to be tackled in the dark, with nothing but a head torch! Scared of the dark? Maybe this challenge isn’t for you…
Where to next? Why not check out 7 ways to become a better you.