If you follow me on social media you already know that last weekend I took to the mud and participated in Mud Hero 2016 at Ski Martock here in Nova Scotia. This was the third mud/obstacle race for me, and while I want to give you a bit of a recap of the day, I also wanted to share with you some important Mud Run Tips on how to keep your shoes on your feet while trudging through mud and muck. There isn’t much worse during a mud run than losing one of your shoes – especially since you may not be able to find it again!
So let’s talk about your shoes before I head into my recap shall we? Keeping your sneakers in your feet is all about how you tie them, and it is easier than you think. What I’m going to show you is called a lace lock, or heel lock.
Have you ever noticed that second hole at the top of your laces? You know, the one you probably have never used and never understood why it existed? We are about to use it!
Step 1: Start with your sneaker on your foot, laced but untied.
Step 2: Loop the end of your lace and thread it through that top hole, making a a loop on the outside of your sneaker. Repeat on the other side.
Step 3: cross your laces and thread the end of each lace through the hole on the outside on the opposite side.
Step 4: Pull the loose end of your laces downwards to start to tighten the lock.
Step 5: Pull up on the loose end of your laces and continue moving them up and down until you get your desired tightness.
Step 6: Tie your laces. I like to first knot them to ensure they don’t come untied, but that is optional.
The lace lock keeps the top of your sneaker tight around your ankle so that your foot won’t slip out, but you are able to keep the rest of your laces/sneakers a bit more lose so you don’t feel constricted while walking or running making losing your shoe one less thing to worry about on race day!
Now let’s move on to my re-cap!
I wasn’t planning on participating in Mud Hero this year, but a few weeks back I was contacted by Columbia Sportswear (who is one of the main event sponsors) to see if I was interested in participating as one of their influencers. Well I’m a sucker for punishment so I jumped at the chance to have a little fun in the mud!
Because I’m taking a break from running this year, I knew I wasn’t going to try to “race” the event, instead I was going to walk the course and have fun completing the obstacles, so I recruited my friend Catherine to come along with me and keep me company.
As a Columbia Influencer, I was sent an AMAZING package of gear to choose from when it came to the day of the race.
As the day drew near, the weather forecast was a bit up in the air, it was calling for maybe rain, maybe sun – but fairly cool temperatures so I decided to wear both my tank top and long-sleeved half-zip since I know I get cold easily.
Did it make me nervous to think about wearing all BRAND NEW gear in a mud race? Yes, yes, it did. Even my husband said it made him want to cry a little thinking about me wearing those brand new hiking sneakers in the mud. But that was the whole point, that Columbia gear is #TestedTough4MudHero so I was really going to be testing that theory! Though when it came down to it, the thought of wearing my beautiful white hat or headband in the mud made me cringe so I was happy when I got to the race site to find out that our “bibs” were actually headbands so I opted to wear that instead of either headpiece from Columbia.
The “before” – looking all cute and clean!
The weather turned out to be perfect for us. We both wore tank tops with another shirt over top and I was the right temperature throughout the race. Not too hot, not too cold. And as it turns out, I was less concerned about getting my sneakers dirty than getting that beautiful light blue long sleeve! But oh boy, did it get dirty.
The race photos came out on Wednesday, and my bib number didn’t pull any but I did find this gem of us on the slide just as we were about to get down. The photo speaks for itself I think, hahaha.
There were some new obstacles this year but instead of talking you through them, I may as well show them to you. Here is the video walk-through Mud Hero posted on their Facebook page before the event as well as a recap they posted after the race showing you a bit more of the muddy situation I was in by clicking here.
It was certainly the muddiest mud event I’ve been in to date. Oh my, the mud, the mud, the MUD! And needless to say, by the end I was covered from head to toe.
For your viewing pleasure, I saved my SnapChat story from Saturday so you could hear more about the experience!
But let’s talk about how my gear held up in clean up. I didn’t do anything fancy, I came home and cleaned them the best I could with the garden hose, then tossed them in the buckets you saw in the video full of water and a bit of dish soap overnight. Sunday I took them out and put the clothes through one wash in my washing machine (on a cold cycle) and rinsed the soap out of my sneakers and left them outside to dry.
That’s it. No stain remover, no scrubbing, nothing fancy at all.
The verdict? Not a single stain, tear or indication that anything had been literally through the mud pit. I am really impressed! #TestedToughForMudHero indeed!
Thank you so much to Columbia Sportswear for sponsoring me to do Mud Hero this year, it was so much fun and everyone I’ve talked to has been super impressed at how well my gear all held up!