Pretty Muddy Race For Life Training Tips

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Race for Life:  Get ready

For those of you who are in training for a charity race this summer, here are my top tips to help you prepare.

The Pretty Muddy Race For Life obstacle course may take you out of your comfort zone. I suggest you start training ASAP if you are not already. If you have not exercised before but are taking the plunge to take on Pretty Muddy (or another event) well done you!  Remember exercise has many health benefits so make sure you continue long after the event has finished.  Working out should be part of your life forever!

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The British Weather

This is an outdoor event and we all know too well the British weather is unpredictable – expect anything on the day!  Set your training days and stick to them, no shying away if it’s windy and raining outside, get out and get used to it. Be prepared as anything can happen on the day.


Pretty Muddy 5K Race for Life
Don’t worry if you can’t manage a 5K run without stopping.  This is an obstacle course, which will include stop starts, so you will have plenty of time to catch your breath. To improve your fitness for this event include…

Parks are a great place to run.  Run on the grass and include uneven surfaces to get used to balancing yourself whilst running.  Include some hills too – great for strengthening the legs.

Include interval sprints, run as fast as you possibly can followed by rest and repeat.  Need a target?  Use a lamp post, sprint to it like the clappers, then a steady walk to the next and repeat.

Stair Sprints 
Find some stairs, sprint up and walk back down.  Mind how you go, especially when you are getting tired.

Taking a brisk walk is a great way to improve fitness.  As with the running include hills and stairs to challenge yourself.

Functional Strength

The course is going to be demanding on the whole body and will require an element of strength to help with anything from crawling under and through obstacles, climbing over A frames, nets etc.  Remember this is a Muddy run so add mud to those obstacles and it’s going to be pretty challenging!

Here are some body weight strengthening exercises to include into your workout:

  • Squats
  • Side squats
  • Squat Jumps
  • Jump squats travelling up stairs
  • Lunges forwards and backwards
  • Walking lunges


If you have a Tuffit include Bulgarian Split Squat, Squat to platform and the many other leg strengthening programmes.

Whole body Strength

Press ups 
A good way to strengthen the upper body, including the arms.  For some of the course you are going to be on your hands and knees, upper body strength will help to pull you along these obstacles.


Plank Hold 
Planks are a great way to improve overall body strength challenge yourself on these holds for has long as you can and aim to increase the hold as your strength improves.


Sit Ups
A strong core gives you the ability to heave yourself up and out of the mud which is going to be helpful!


This exercise is a must!  A good all rounder for improving strength, power and fitness!  Make this exercise more challenging by dropping to the ground with your chest and thighs in contact with the floor then power yourself back up to standing and finish with a jump.  Remember you are going to be getting down and dirty you need to be able to get up quick and sprint to the next obstacle.  You have to include this exercise!  If you have a Tuffit there is further challenging exercise – Burpee with a box jump, this one really does hit the spot!

Bear Crawls 

Bottoms up ladies! Hands and feet in contact with the floor – walk ten paces forwards and ten paces back.  Once you have got used to that try it sideways.

Partner Drill  
Always expect the unexpected and be ready to act quickly.  Here is a little drill you can do with a partner, take this in turns. Lie on your back and relax, close your eyes but keep the brain alert!  Listen for your partner to shout GO then react as quickly as possible – get up, turn around and sprint like crazy for 100m.
Same again only this time lie on your front, head down, eyes closed.

Good luck & Have fun!

We’ll be there on 9th July at Ripley Castle doing our local Pretty Muddy Race for Life.

Jenny xx

Image credits: Jane Rix /

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