We sat down with Scott & Marianne Wilson, two long time Mudders who just recently made the leap into the world of Tough Mudder endurance. How did they get there? This is their endurance training journey.
They did it by enrolling in Allison Tai‘s Tough Mudder endurance training programs for Toughest Mudder & World’s Toughest Mudder. Unlocking the support they needed to crush both of these longform events. They speak to their experience from signing up, to crossing the finish line and achieving Tough Mudder greatness.
Their Endurance Training Journey
Marianne and I both signed up for Allison Tai’s Toughest Training Program in the Spring of 2021 after having a full virtual season of events. In 2020, we completed all the challenges Tough Mudder supplied along with entering the endurance series for the first time. Virtual Toughest and virtual World’s Toughest Mudder was challenging and fun. Although we knew doing them in the mud was going to be a very different experience than in our backyard. One of our priorities for the 2021 season was to find a coach and get some training in. Before we knew it, we had a full calendar of Tough Mudder events for the 2021 season from May through December.
No Excuses Podcast
Marianne heard about a Toughest Mudder training program on the No Excuses Podcast. Host & Tough Mudder MC Sean Corvelle was interviewing Allison Tai and discussing the training program in great detail. Marianne had me listen and shortly after we signed up for the training program, knowing we both wanted something to keep us accountable. Late April arrived, 12 weeks before our event, and we received an outline of our training plan for week one and just dove right in. We had our first virtual training meeting on day two of our training to get the skinny on what’s to come. We had a good group attend and by week two, we each had accountability partners that have since become good friends both on and off the course.
The Training Program
The training plan was complete with everything we would need to reach our goals including prehab, cardio, balance, mental and physical strength. One of the best parts of the training program was the weekly virtual meetings with Allison and the other training group members. We would meet as a group and Allison would provide insight on everything from nutrition to running form. Allison even had special guests come on to cover other important topics.
Toughest Event 2022
At the Poconos Toughest event our group met and went over the course with Tough Mudder CEO, Kyle. Many in the group were first time Toughest competitors and we were all very excited to meet in person and pit together. At the end of the race, we shared our highs, lows and wins for the event.
Much of our team interaction carried on throughout the season, believe it or not. Marianne and I also had to be a part of the World’s Toughest Mudder training program with Allison Tai, since we enjoyed her guidance throughout the Toughest training experience so much. Here, we met even more friends in the Tough Mudder community. Our first year of endurance racing was one of success and accomplishment thanks to the training program Allison led. We’ve had such a good experience with the training programs that we signed up again for the 2022 Toughest training program and are looking forward to connecting with old and new friends in the upcoming weeks.
On the adrenaline high after the Virtual World’s Toughest Mudder in 2020, we found ourselves proud owners of Holy Grail Passes for the 2021 season. While we had an exciting time doing the Virtual Endurance events, we had no experience training for events of this magnitude. This did not concern us, because we had all winter to procrastinate and would “figure it out” in the spring. Unsure of what to do, we looked to see if Tough Mudder had any training resources. Low and behold, they were ready with a plan for us with Toughest Training Coach Allison Tai.
No Excuses Podcast
Allison was a guest on Tough Mudder’s No Excuse Podcast to talk about the training program she would be leading for the Toughest Mudder races in 2021. Although we mulled it over for another month, it was an easy decision to sign up. Plus, the plan began 12 weeks out from our event – so we wanted to be involved in the entirety of the program. We saw this as an amazing opportunity to train with someone who is an accomplished OCR athlete and trainer. Spoiler alert: she is as kind and genuine as she appears to be if you have binge watched any World’s Toughest Mudder footage on YouTube. Once we began the training program, we were immediately glad we did.
The Training Program
The weekly training program was easy to follow, adaptable, and did not require a gym membership. The equipment needed to complete the strength portions were minimal and found we already had the items around the house. Allison was exceptionally good at offering alternative exercises and modifications that we were not able to do for any reason.
Through the Facebook group we were able to connect with others in training and create friendships that carried over onto the course. Having people to encourage you and share in your successes made the experience that much more enjoyable. Throughout the training, accountability was key to success for us. Participants were encouraged to journal our daily workouts. Share with our group, and pair up with another participant to hold each other accountable. Another way we were able to connect with each other was during our weekly online chat. The weekly chats often featured guest speakers with knowledge of different areas pertaining to our training and race preparation. Topics discussed ranged from gear for race day, mental preparedness, race and pitting strategy, breathing, stretching, nutrition, and recovery.
Toughest Event 2022
By the end of the training, we felt like we were as ready for the 12 hour, overnight experience. All our questions had been answered and we were ready to roll with whatever happened. Race weekend we were well rested, prepared and focused for the race ahead. We were able to reach our goals at Toughest AND World’s due to the solid training program Coach Allison led. What Toughest Mudder Training provided us was a plan to follow to be successful, and a support community to get there. The time and effort we put in everyday was worth it to be able to finish our first World’s Toughest Mudder hand in hand.