Tough Mudder Training – Core Principle 3 – Pick a Base Workout

After outlining The Coffee Renter’s Tough Mudder Training Core Principles and fleshing out our first two principles, Identify an Inspiration and Assess your Fitness Level,  it is now time to delve into Principle 3…

3) Pick a Base Workout(s) – Total Body Strength Training, Core, and Cardio.

This principle could (should?) have been entitled “Design Your Workout Program”, but that sort of implies that you can’t just use something out of the box; that you need all sorts of research and analysis to get started…All discouraging thoughts.

I’m trying to be helpful, encouraging, and inspiring in any way I can. So I want you to know that there are plenty of off-the shelf workout programs that will work just fine to prepare you for the Mudder; You only need to design something new….IF YOU WANT TO. The key is that whatever workout program you pick, it needs to include total body strength training (especially core strength training) and cardio training….and you should enjoy it (or at least parts of it). Here’s an example Base Program from the Tough Mudder site.

So just to be clear, Principle 8 “Mix it up” will encourage us to keep changing up the exercises we’re doing so as to train the whole body in all sorts of ways and to avoid any “plateau effects”. The body will adapt to any workout or exercise at some point so to avoid this, we will keep switching it up. The Base Workout Program is the essential exercises that will be the bulk of our training, that we’ll vary from, that we’ll keep coming back to. It is the default. OK, I think I’m clear on that…Here’s what  I used for my Basic Workouts:

Day 1 – Upper Body: 5 sets of the following: Chinups, Pushups, Plank, Inverted Pushups, Crunches, and Dips.

Day 2 – Lower Body: 5 sets of the following: Scissor-kick lunges, calf dips, step-ups/step-downs, and Deadlifts

Day 3 – Cardio: 1 Set Strength Exercise (usually burpee pushups), Run 1 mile, assess joints/muscles, rinse repeat until “done”.

Day 4 – Recovery/Stretch

I may need to elaborate on these in a later post, but that is essentially what I did as basic workouts. Notice, it is not a lot of exercises….And once you start mixing other elements in, you may simplify the basic workout even more. That’s it for now. Pick your program and get to it…..


The Coffee Renter’s Tough Mudder Training Core Principles

1) Identify an Inspiration – To keep on doing…

2) Assess your Fitness Level – At first and Often.

3) Pick a Base Workout(s) – Total Body Strength Training, Core, and Cardio.

4) Incorporate Functional Exercises – Pick Pushups over Bench-press.

5) Focus on the Exercise Intensity, Not Duration – Short Intense Burst are Best.

6) Exercise Outside as much as possible – Get used to the elements.

7) Include Recovery Days in your Workout Plan – Plan them, don’t just take “a day off”.

8) Mix it up – Avoid that plateau by doing different exercises.

9) Share your progress – To keep you honest and accountable.

This entry was posted in Health & Fitness, Self Improvement and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Tough Mudder Training – Core Principle 3 – Pick a Base Workout

  1. Pingback: Tough Mudder Training – Core Principles Introduction | Renting the Coffee

  2. Matt says:

    Hi there,

    I’ve just found the blog and have been reading through with interest. I’ve signed up for a Tough Mudder here in the UK in three months and am considering using Waterson’s Commando Workout as a kick start. I see in one of your blogs you mention using it for the TM. Just wondering if you found it useful at all?


  3. coffeerenting says:

    Hi Matt, Sorry for the delay in getting back to you. I’ve found Waterson’s workout to be excellent. One thing I like about it is that it alternates between upper and lowerbody (rather than mixing them into a single workout). I found that I could work harder and have enough recovery time before exercising that body part again. My base lowerbody workout is still based largely on Waterson’s. Good luck with your training. I’d love to hear how it goes.

  4. sweetopiagirl says:

    Reblogged this on Inspiredweightloss.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s