Planning to do a Tough Mudder ‘one day’ and having actually signed up for one are two completely different things, I’ve realised. Suddenly I’m not so sure just being generally strong and fit as well as a regular at the gym are quite enough to get me through 19km of mud – with a bunch of obstacles thrown in, too.
I might be alone here, but it’s not even the obstacles that concern me. Even if some of them involve fire and electrocution.. It’s the fact that I’ve only ever run more than 5km once in my entire life – and that was five years ago. Tackling what’s essentially a half marathon – through mud – is what gives me that anxious feeling in my belly. So, knowing that running had to be my first conquered fear in the preparation for August, I decided to get stuck right in.
Committing to Tough Mudder as part of #TeamSony meant that recruiting the SmartBand Talk (a cool fitness wristband) as my personal trainer was also a must, just to keep me in check from day to day. Paired with my Xperia Z3 smartphone, and synched with its digital diary – Sony’s Lifelog app – it will ensure that I’m generally leading a much more active lifestyle outside of the gym as well. The app and SmartBand Talk can track my steps taken and the calories I’ve burned throughout the day – and yes, I do believe that the little things really do add up.
While I accept the preparation for Tough Mudder means plenty of running, my main issue with any running is the boredom factor – repeating the exact same motion over and over for an entire workout. The best way to tackle this, for me, was to sign up to a fitness class that involved running with other kinds of exercise thrown in just to shift my focus throughout. Cue 1Rebel. The warehouse-esque fitness studio based in the City is straight-up awesome. Admittedly the luxury feel of the studio (towels kept at three different temperatures, a juice bar and heated changing room seats) might not exactly be preparing me for the grit of Tough Mudder, but you’ve got to start somewhere, right?
The Reshape class at 1Rebel lasts 45 minutes and involves bouts of treadmill work interlaced with strength and muscular endurance exercises on your own work bench, which is kitted out with six pairs of dumbbells, resistance bands and medicine balls. The treadmill work involves gruelling sprints and steep climbs while the resistance segments get you doing press-ups, snatches and swings among other exercises – both set to a high-energy soundtrack in a bid to add a little motivation. The class really allowed me to push myself harder than I would running on my own, and I felt like the interchanging of running and resistance work would be a good introduction to the premise of a Tough Mudder – even if it is on a much milder scale.
But as it turns out, one session of running and giving myself a kick up the backside in my daily life for a week didn’t suddenly make me a world-class athlete. So persevering with the classes and really aiming high with my daily goals on my Smartband Talk are going to be my first two training goals, with achieving a balance that doesn’t suck any enjoyment out of the lead-up to the event being at the forefront of my mind. Wish me luck!
Follow me on Twitter and Instagram to keep up with my training @theglucosekid @womensfitnessuk
To find out more about the progress of Amanda, #TeamSony and fitness technology, click here