Why I Became a Tough Mudder

When I told my family last year that I had signed up (and paid good money) for an 11 mile obstacle run, I think their first response was to shuffle through their contacts looking for the psychiatrist I saw in the early months of the divorce.  “You’re doing WHAT?  Why?,” I heard repeatedly, usually followed with a resigned head shake, “You’re crazy.”  Crazy I may be, but I felt compelled to do the event and I am so glad that I did.  Tough Mudder was more to me than a run.

A few months after the July disaster of my marriage, I signed up for my very first race ever: a half marathon.  This was a bit preemptive, since not only had I never competed, I still was weak and skinny.  I went into that race only having completed the distance once before.  That was the worst race of my life (cold, rain, illness), but I endured and made it through.  It was exactly the confidence boost I needed at that point.

Over the next several months, I ran more races, but none of them required me to dig all that deep into myself.  None of them gave me the sense of triumph over adversity that I was seeking.

Then came Mudder.  My boyfriend was the one who actually found this race and he proposed that we enter together.  I loved the idea immediately. With a shared purpose, we hit the gym with renewed vigor and not a little trepidation.

The event itself was unbelievable.  It turned out that it was slated to be held in a dry county, so the money that normally went towards beer instead paid for a longer track – almost 15 miles up and down (did I mention up?) a motocross track.  The temperature was cold, and the water obstacles were colder, as volunteers emptied flats of ice into the streams.

It was an amazing challenge for my boyfriend and I to tackle together.  It gave a true sense of working together and overcoming adversity.  My other races had been alone; it was beautiful to have someone to share this with.  It helped me learn to trust him, learn that he was not going to abandon me when the going got tough.  We pushed each other, encouraged each other, lifted each other, and even shared some muddy, sweaty kisses.  It was amazing.

I think everyone, especially those re-centering after trauma, should do their own version of Tough Mudder. Something that pushes you further than you comfortably want to go.  Something to show you what you can accomplish.  Something to show you that discomfort is temporary.  Something to show you that the support of friends can help get you through when you want to quit.  When the big picture of what you have to overcome is too big, it helps to have a little Mudder to think back on and realize, “I can do this.”

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Thank you for sharing!

10 thoughts on “Why I Became a Tough Mudder

  1. looking for buddha again – I'm a divorcing dad. Betrayed via infidelity by my wife. I love my kids and miss the wholenss of my family. I never thought this could happen to us. I always thought we would be that special couple and be together forever. But... Fast forward. Now divorced and it still sucks.
    looking for buddha again says:

    Yay Mudder. My next on in in September.

    1. looking for buddha again – I'm a divorcing dad. Betrayed via infidelity by my wife. I love my kids and miss the wholenss of my family. I never thought this could happen to us. I always thought we would be that special couple and be together forever. But... Fast forward. Now divorced and it still sucks.
      looking for buddha again says:

      aaarrggghh…hit enter too soon and left in the typos. Should say… Yay Mudder. My next one is in September. Rock on fellow mudder!!

  2. Fierce Over 40; From Fat and Broke to Fit and Fabulous Over 40 – New York City – "There are only two types of women; Goddesses and doormats." - Pablo Picasso Which one are you? At 40 years old, isn't it time you started living your life YOUR way? Shouldn't you have superior confidence and a sexy swagger by now? How I went from a fat, broke, miserable person, to a sexy, successful, and happy entrepreneur after the age of 40. I want every single woman to feel beautiful, sexy, powerful, in control, and have the faith and confidence to pursue the life of their dreams. I want them to be emotionally (hormonally) balanced, love their skin without makeup, be able to grab any item of clothing from the closet knowing it will fit, ride a bicycle, run after their dog and children, embrace and enjoy sports, and turn heads where ever they go. If every woman had all of that under control, what kind of problems would they have in their lives? • Would they be more patient with their children, spouse, co-workers, friends, strangers, and customers? • Would they walk around the world smiling and radiating good energy? • Would people want to do business with them, offer them jobs, want to be around them because they are happy, smiling, balanced, intelligent and an attractive person? • Is it just about the losing weight and becoming fit? • Can they look deeper into their emotions and see what is the need they are trying to fill with food and other distractions? • When you value yourself, value your body, value your choices, you will be valued back by the entire world. The world will react to you exactly the way you dreamed it would. "Don’t be concerned that things appear to be falling apart: this has to happen in order for something new and wonderful to emerge." – Marianne Williamson I used raw plant foods, fifteen-minute workouts, spiritual principals, and NYC beauty secrets to go from fat, miserable, and broke, to a healthy, gorgeous, successful, fit, entrepreneur at the age of 45! And you can too! Could a bad lifestyle, negative patterns, codependency, food addictions, and lame excuses be sabotaging your health, wealth, and fun, and wasting the best years of your life? • Are you tired of looking in the mirror at your skin and body and just giving in to the notion that you can’t fight the aging process? • Do you wonder where the energy you used to feel has gone? • Do you still have dreams that you put by the wayside to have a family, or stay in a job you really don’t enjoy, or feel trapped in a relationship because you just don’t know how to break free, how to find a new job, or start a new career and be on your own? • Do you know you should be eating healthier but just can’t give up your favorite foods and feel like a failure? • Do you look at athletes and wish you tried harder when you were younger to achieve grander physical goals? • Do you wish you could be your own boss but just don’t know where to start? • What if there was a simple way to put your body into an energized and youthful state; not only a physical one, but a mental and emotional one, where you KNOW that your dreams can and will be fulfilled like when you were in your teens or 20’s? • What if I told you I had the simple secret to becoming a MAGNET to all the desires you have in the world? • What if you welcomed challenges instead of fearing them? • What if you could become reborn into the life of your desires? • Learn the easy, fool-proof way to break food addiction without dieting. • Destroy unwanted body fat quickly without spending one minute in the gym. • Feel energized like a teenager, including your libido. • Live in a constant state of tantric sensual energy that makes even walking the dog a pleasurable event. • Feel like you’re contributing to the world instead of watching your life pass you by. My amazing simple program and proven tools allow you to do all this and more even though you see no hope. You’ll learn to: • Eat healthy and enjoy it. • Get into shape where everyone will be asking you how you got so ripped so fast! • Have the willpower to say no to bad food and toxins. • Walk with a sexy swagger that shows the world you are an amazing Goddess and no longer a doormat letting life pass you by. Warning! My approach is outside of the box, outside the society norms, and will probably clear your life of draining non-friendships. If you are single you will have more men to choose from than you ever imagined, and if you are married, your husband will feel like he has his girlfriend back again and your relationship will reach a new level of intimacy. If what you’ve been doing hasn’t worked out for you so far, try this crazy approach! My Story… I moved to New York City three weeks after the 9/11 tragedy of 2001 with no money, no job, no friends, no spirit, no hope, no family, and no idea how to change all that. I just lost my best friend/boyfriend to suicide after he gambled $975,000 in four months, the country was seemingly at war, and I had not worked in over a year. When I drove into Manhattan after a three day drive from Las Vegas that I don't even remember, it was a crazy busy Saturday and you couldn’t make a turn off of 34th Street, and there were tons of people in the street, and cops whistling at me to move, and finally it dawned on me that I had just moved across the country with no plan, no friends, no family, no money, and no hope. Now I was faced with the very real beginning of the rest of my life and I was sitting at the stoplight crying my eyes out. For the very first time in my life I had to ask for help. Then when it seemed like I had started to get it all together, I started gaining weight at the age of 41 and nothing that worked for me in the past was working again. That sent me into a depression that put the rest of my life on hold. I couldn’t fit into my clothes so I didn’t go anywhere. Since I didn’t go anywhere it affected my income and social life. Without either of those, I had no future. I had no energy. I was so tired all the time that if my apartment was on fire, I wouldn’t have been able to get out. Finally I had enough! • I spent $20,000 searching for answers from trainers and doctors. • I spent every waking moment reading and researching for answers. • Being incapacitated scared me to death. • I refused to give up. • I wanted to feel normal again. • I wanted a social life again. • I wanted my income back. • I wanted to fit into my clothes. • I wanted to feel happy again. • I wanted sex again! I tried every diet and style of eating conceivable. I found so much conflicting information. Three doctors all gave me different diagnosis from hormone issues to blown adrenal glands. I’m sure I started needing glasses from spending ridiculous amounts of time on the computer. I had spent incredible amounts of money on supplements, vitamins, and magic pills. Nothing worked. A woman came into my life who introduced me to benefits of an alkaline vs acidic body. Coincidentally my best friend’s body was tested to be at the most acidic one can be before your body starts making cancer cells. This opened my eyes. I wasn’t ready for anything like that. I started researching vegetarian then vegan lifestyles. I started joining social groups. Then women were stopping me to ask about my hair, my figure, my skin, how I got my business started, where I shopped, how I met my boyfriend, and even asked me about how my sex life was because I walked around so juicy! It all started to come together, like a magic potion I figured out. All my life plans, all my desires, nearly everything I wanted flowed into my life easily. My energy was like I was 25 again. I lost so much weight I was back to my high school number but I was lean and toned with no stomach upset or bloat. I finally had clear skin after ten years! I have no wrinkles and no need for fillers in my face. I not only had the confidence I once had but more confidence than I ever knew existed. I was hitting my goals so fast I had to keep making new ones to be challenged. My entire life was completely turned around from when I landed in New York City. I had made it here. I was approached about my secrets to being sexy and asked to share them with the world. For me, it’s a whole package. You can’t be sexy without having all parts of your life in sync. So sexy and successful I shall teach you! Take my advice and on the first day you will feel invigorated! You will have a whole new outlook on life! You will be excited to wake up every day! My book will teach you… • How to take control of your body and never diet again and enjoy optimal health • How to feel sexy again • How to have healthy self esteem • How to have amazing adventures • How to have satisfying relationships • How to have fun on matter what you’re doing • How to pursue your desires • How to achieve financial success • How to be sexy and fierce! These are life skills you were never taught in school. I did not invent them, but I was genius in that I never quit until I found the answers I needed to make my life how I wanted, and not live by anyone else’s rules. Everything you do, you do because it has a payoff. • Are you ready to give up negative deprogramming? • Are you ready to explore a new world in which you only associate with positive people who lift you up? • Imagine waking every day on your own body's time clock, slowly, gently, and excited to rise. • Imagine having the energy to accomplish all that you want to do in a day. • Imagine how it feels to know that you have a magic wand to grant all your wishes. P.S. Remember….this is the EXACT SYSTEM I USED TO GO FROM A FAT, BROKE MISERABLE PERSON, TO A SEXY, SUCCESSFUL, AND HAPPY ENTRPRENEUR AFTER THE AGE OF 40! P.S.S. The fat picture of me was taken at the age of 41, with a cell phone. The lean bikini picture on this site is of me at the age of 45. No air-brushing! It's from my IPhone. I’ve shared all of my secrets. If I can do it so can you. P.S.S.S I guarantee that if anyone who is fat thinks that they can't lose weight no matter what, that if they move in with me, or move near me, do what I STILL do daily, they ABSOLUTELY WILL LOSE WEIGHT, not from dieting, but from changing their LIFESTYLE. There IS a way out! "Gianna......I am speechless. I could not stop reading and I am being TOTALLY honest with you. No changes needed at all. It was so gripping, and yes, I cannot wait to read more. I love your transparency and how you began telling your story. Thank you for the honor and pleasure of sharing this with me. I'm waiting with excitement to read the rest. Goddess speed to you!!!" - Love SG Red Hott
    Fierce Over 40 says:

    This is the third time Tough Mudder has been put in my face. I think it’s calling me too.

  3. ourlifein3d – Life In 3D started as my Daddy Day Dare. I became a stay at home Dad years ago. My fast-paced professional life was thrown in reverse as I taught phonics and watched yet another episode of Dora The Explorer. Now, many years later, my girls are starting to grow up a little. 'Cute and cuddly' is being replaced with homework, spankings and braces. Check in from time to time to see how this experiment continues to evolve. See if I can survive as the only male in the house. I will offer our stories on the girls' escapades; never dull and hopefully amusing!
    Our Life In 3D says:

    Yay! I didn’t know you were a Tough Mudder too…

  4. lynnerose – Virginia - USA – Lynne is a new blogger who loves trying new things, crafting, finding pretties on the Internet, reading & writing (but not 'rithmetic :), and playing with Samson & Cardie, her beloved Newfoundland & Chow mix dogs. She is a pseudo health specialist, amateur writer and mom who has been running since age 11 and even likes it a little. She believes that, to truly live & enjoy life, one must be open to the possibilities...and that when you lie with dogs, you might get a few fleas, but hey, they are so, so worth it!
    Roselyn says:

    Go, Mudder, go! What beauty in the effort, the trying, the completing. Thanks for this inspiring post!

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