How To Conquer Tough Mudder’s New Obstacles For 2019

In This Series

Even if you’re a Tough Mudder veteran you can’t just turn up to a race assuming you can get by on hard-won experience alone. That’s because every year Tough Mudder brings in new challenges, and in 2019 this includes the tallest and longest obstacles ever seen on its courses.

The Mudderhorn, for instance, will be 25ft (7.6m) high and will require participants to work together to climb a cargo net over it, while the lengthy Gauntlet will challenge your full-body strength as you make your way through its multiple sections. Other new obstacles include Black Widow, a tangled web of tightropes that will test your core strength, balance and agility.

As well as the new obstacles, Tough Mudder has raised the stakes by adding five obstacles to every Classic course, meaning you’ll be taking on 25 in total over eight to ten miles (13-16km). The shorter 5K events have crammed in another three more than last year, meaning you’ll have to conquer 13 obstacles in all.

To help you get through the updated courses intact, we asked Born Barikor, Tough Mudder’s UK trainer, for his advice on the best exercises to train for the new obstacles.

Bodyweight Exercises


(Image credit: Unknown)

Obstacles like The Gauntlet (pictured) and Leap of Faith will require you to be comfortable holding your bodyweight and working against it is a great way to train. Try these exercises:

Grip Strength

Grip Strength

(Image credit: Unknown)

Good grip strength is always an asset, especially on obstacles like Mudderhorn (pictured) and Augustus Gloop 2.0. Develop yours with these exercises:

Core Exercises

Spread Eagle

(Image credit: Unknown)

A strong core will help you keep your balance on obstacles like Spread Eagle (pictured) and Black Widow. Try these exercises:

Agility And Balance

Staying on your feet, keeping your balance and being able to twist your body are great assets for obstacles like Tight Squeeze and Hydrophobia. Improve your overall agility and balance by adding these exercises to your workout:

Running And Stamina

Whether you’re taking on the 5K or the Classic event, being comfortable getting yourself around the course, while not crucial, is always a plus. Try working in bouts of interval training during any running sessions you are doing to help with your stamina. Give these running workouts a whirl:

  • 60sec medium pace sprint, turn around and get back to the start point in under 60sec. Rest for 30sec and repeat five times.
  • 10 x hill repetitions with slow walk down
  • 20 x 30m sprint with walk back recovery
  • 500m, 400m, 300m, 200m, 100m at 80%. Rest for 1min between efforts and repeat twice.
  • 40min tempo run (60-70%) finishing with a light bodyweight circuit
Nick Harris-Fry
Senior writer

Nick Harris-Fry is a journalist who has been covering health and fitness since 2015. Nick is an avid runner, covering 70-110km a week, which gives him ample opportunity to test a wide range of running shoes and running gear. He is also the chief tester for fitness trackers and running watches, treadmills and exercise bikes, and workout headphones.