Today we’re chatting with Tyler Veerman, an avid Spartan racer, who takes on World’s Toughest Mudder for the first time in Atmore, Alabama. Lets find out what he has to say…
How was your first World’s Toughest Mudder?
My first WTM experience was pretty hardcore! The obstacles get slightly more intimidating as the race goes on, as do the elements. Having the right gear definitely pays dividends. The idea of having obstacle bypass bands on every loop (after 25mi) made it interesting with race strategy. I chose to skip the ones that took too much time which paid off. It was especially nice to have the pit readily accessible on the race course.
Have you done a 24 hour race before?
That was my second 24 hour race… first being Spartan Ultra Worlds 2021.
How would you say WTM compares to your toughest Spartan race?
With Tough Mudder, the rigs involve more technicality and maneuvering through compared to Spartan. Spartan’s obstacles can be more grueling and time consuming, such as a good heavy carry or tough obstacle combo. With Tough Mudder, there is always the water element which can make your course terrain/environment change over time.
Any training tips you’d give to people who have only run a Spartan in the past?
If this is your first Tough Mudder, prepare for some crazy obstacles with lots of water! Work on good grip strength and mentally prepare for other factors, such as getting electrocuted or jumping into full ice baths. Lots of shenanigans out there. Oh, and take a buddy.
What are your favorite aspects of WTM that you don’t get with Spartan?
One of my favorite aspects of Tough Mudder is the team environment and working together through the obstacles. For example, the “Everest” obstacle I couldn’t do without the help of the two gentlemen who volunteered to stay all night and pull people up. There was another obstacle, Devil’s Beard, that had a net bounded to the ground and it became very beneficial to use teamwork for conserving energy.
After completing your first WTM, do you think you’ll come back for more in the future?
I’m 110% coming back next year for that orange jacket!
A lot of Spartans say WTM “isn’t tough enough.” What do you think about that?
Tough Mudder has it’s own unique ways of being tough. The endurance series Tough Mudder puts on is pretty intense, and over time that course can wear on you. Honestly if you want it to be tougher, just run it harder or try all the obstacles solo!
Thanks, Tyler. Looking forward to seeing you at World’s Toughest Mudder 2023
Get that orange jacket!