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How Should You Get In Shape For A 5K Mud Run?

By Joni Clasen

With every year that passes, the demand for obstacle course racing seems to grow and grow. This year hundreds of obstacle course races will be put on throughout the states and a huge number of people will participate in them. People are drawn in unprecedented levels because it is a fun and exciting way to work towards their exercise goals. So whether you have a few mud runs under your belt or you are just starting out, the next step is to begin your training. But now you may be wondering exactly how to prepare for an event like this.

The basic formula for a mud run is that it involves running for a certain distance and also completing obstacles along the way. So you should be ready to run (or walk if you choose) the distance of the course and to put forth a quick burst of power to get you up and over a wall or some other type of hurdle.

To design an effective exercise plan, try to incorporate both endurance-building workouts like jogging and muscle building workouts such as push-ups and pull-ups. Some athletes spend one day doing endurance exercise and then the next day doing a muscle building exercise. But if you are looking for a less time-consuming method, you can follow circuit-training principles. A sample circuit would look like this:

*Two Minute Run

*Push-Ups (as many as you can)

*Two Minutes of Jogging

*Pull-Ups (As many as you can)

*Two Minutes Jogging

*Squats (As many as you can)

*Two Minutes of Jogging

After completing the circuit you would then rest for a few minutes and then begin a new circuit or one with other exercises.

No matter how you decide to balance aerobic and anaerobic exercise, you need to hit your strength-training with an intense effort. You will only get stronger when you your body thinks that the workout was more difficult than what your muscles were able to do easily. When you give your muscles an intense workout, your body will go to work reinforcing your muscles so that when you do the workout again, it will not be as difficult.

Everybody always asks how long you should spend getting in shape for a 5k run. The answer will be different for everybody based on their hopes for the race and their current condition. If you have a very basic level of conditioning, start preparing for the race at least eight weeks ahead of time. No matter what, the more effort you put into your training, the more competitive you will be and the more you will benefit from participating in a mud run.

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