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Roni Tough Mudder

I have SO much to tell you I don’t know where to begin! Friday I’m hopping on a plane to San Diego specifically to run the SoCal Tough Mudder.

That’s right.. I’m running my 3rd Mudder!

I fell in love after my first one and in a momentary lapse of sanity, I purchased the 2013 Season Pass. That means I have access to every North American Tough Mudder event this year.

Every. Single. One.

Now, there’s no way I could run each event but the pass pays for itself as long as you run 4 so I’m setting my goal to run at least 5.

5 Tough Mudders in 2013.

Yes. I’ve officially gone MAD.

It’s hard to explain what I like about these events. Each one is a challenge in the best possible way.


You have to overcome the physical challenge of actually running 12 miles and participating in obstacles. As someone who didn’t like –or even think she could– run until the ripe old age of 30, this is a huge accomplishment for me.


Not all obstacles are possible to complete alone so you have to accept help and trust others to give you the support you need. Whether it’s physical like hoisting you over a wall or mental like jumping from a 15th foot platform into a lake (watch my first video for more info on THAT!) you can’t be afraid to ask for help. Another huge accomplishment for me.


You have to get over yourself. You are going to get dirty. You are going to look like crap. You are going to have some bad photos snapped of you and possibly even an embarassing video where you are screaming like a crazy person. That’s the POINT! Lose yourself and live in the moment! Something I’m constantly striving for.

After I completed the marathon in 2009, I proved to myself I could do anything and since then I specifically look for challenges that put me out of my comfort zone in more ways than one. These events do exactly that. I’m just as nervous to complete this one as I was my first, but I know afterwards the feeling of accomplishment and the renewed sense of confidence is worth it.

All of that being said I want to extend an invitation.

Issue a challenge, if you will.

I want to run a Tough Mudder with you!

Yes, YOU.

You, sitting there reading this thinking you aren’t ready. Thinking you couldn’t possible complete an event like this. Maybe you’d like to, but you’re waiting UNTIL you hit some number on the scale. Maybe you’re thinking once you fit into THAT pair of jeans you’ll start to try new things. Maybe, you’ve been avoided challenging yourself because you may… may… fail!

Does any of this sound familiar?

Here’s the deal…

  1. I will cover the Tough Mudder ticket cost for 1 reader who leaves a comment and tells me why this would be the ultimate challenge for them.
  2. To enter share your story and which Tough Mudder event you’d like to run in the comments. (Click ere to see the 2013 event list)
  3. I will pick the top 3-5 entries (Monday 2/18) that share their story and chose an event I can actually make it to (I do have to look at travel and the family’s schedule before committing) as finalist.
  4. I will publish the finalists in a post and allow everyone to vote for a winner.
  5. The winner and I run a Tough Mudder together. All I ask in return is a guest post. The point is to inspire others with YOUR story.

I should let you know I reached out to Tough Mudder to support this contest but they turned me down, so no, this is not a sponsored post and I am in no way affiliated with them. I am bearing the expense because I think it will be fun. My goal is to inspire and motivate others to get out of their comfort zones and stop waiting to start living their lives because of some stupid number on some stupid scale or the fact they don’t wear a certain size.

So let’s get to it! Who wants to run a Tough Mudder with me? I’m nervous and excited as I hit publish on this one. Yet another way I’m pushing myself out of that comfort zone! Join me and leave your stories in the comments.

  • RealMomofOC

    After running 2 half marathons last year, losing 80 lbs, and the falling of the horse. I am back in the saddle and need continual obstacles i.e. Tough Mudder to train for or I just won’t run

    • RoniNoone

      I TOTALLY agree.. I love having an event on my horizon.

  • Deanna

    I’ve been dying to do a tough mudder for a few years now, ever since my hubby finished his tough mudder in 2011. As I watched on the side-lines thinking to myself this looks like fun but I can’t because I could never get over the wall, I can’t because I have no one to do it with, I can’t because I weigh too much, I can’t because I have no upper body strength, I can’t because….well the list goes on. I have lost 58 pounds, I have completed 6 half marathons (training for my 7th), I have completed two Tri’s, 2 over night relays and doing a tough mudder is still nagging at me…do it do it do it, but never had the balls to pull the trigger!

    • RoniNoone

      DO IT! Where are you? Is there one in your area? Let me know and I’ll put you in the running and we’ll do it together.

  • Susan Cope

    For the past 2-3 years i felt like I was stuck. Stuck at a higher weight than I would like. Stuck in a dead end job and stuck in a rut at home. Just before my birthday last fall (Oct 2012) I started running and completed my first 5K. It was the first domino that led to a lot of other healthy changes. My life still isn’t perfect (whose is?) but I’ve lost weight, am much happier and feel like I am on the road to bigger and better things. If chosen, I feel like this challenge would be like metaphorically getting myself unstuck from the mud. Plus I really loved playing in the mud when I was a kid and the Charlotte, NC Tough Mudder is the weekend after my birthday.

    • RoniNoone

      Oh you’ll get muddy!! I can do NC! Consider yourself entered. More info soon!

  • Kathy Hamilton

    I don’t need an entry since I am already registerred for 2 Tough Mudders in 2013 (first timer here) but I just want to say your blog gets me pumped up to do them. I will be at TM Mid-Atlantic in the spring!

    • RoniNoone

      I should be there too! Let’s connect when it gets closer. I’ll probably run the first wave sat morning.

  • Kim Love-Ottobre

    This is awesome of you. I don’t want to run a Tough Mudder, but just want to give props to YOU and your lucky Mudder Buddy!!

    • Dana

      Ditto what Kim said. I have no desire to run a Tough Mudder but wanted to acknowledge that I think it’s great that you made this offer!

  • Emily Lieser

    My husband and I are just starting our training for the Tough Mudder in Sommerset, WI in July! We haven’t registered yet, partly because I am terrified! He has been talking about it, so I figured I would just do it too. I saw that you did one and loved it, which inspired me further. I have never run more than 6 miles consecutively and it’s going to take a bit of training, but I am excited. I think :)

    • RoniNoone

      I’d love to do one with my husband but he’s not game. :(

  • Amber

    Why is this the ultimate challenge for me? Well, I’ve talked myself out of leaving a comment here about 15 times already. I’ve used all the classics – you’re too big, you’re too slow, you could never do that, you’re not strong enough. There comes a point where I have to realize that there is never going to be a “perfect” time to do something like this. It’s now or never – I’m in! (And I think you rock for making a goal to do 5 of these this year!)

    • RoniNoone

      Which one do you want to do? I hope the dates work out!

  • Megan

    Wow, Roni! What an opportunity this is.

    I want to run a Tough Mudder with you in order to find myself. Sure, it sounds cliche but it is entirely true. In late 2007 I was a married woman who had no children. As such, I signed to work with a trainer and was successful in losing 60 pounds. I felt amazing. I was strong. I was dedicated. I was successful.

    Towards the end of 2008 I found out that I was pregnant with our first child and I used this as an excuse to stop training, start eating and get lazy. Nine months later our daughter was born and had to spend a week in the NICU. This is where I lost myself. During her stay I started having panic attacks and problems with anxiety. She came home healthy. :)

    Four months later I found out that I was pregnant with our second child. He was born healthy with no problems. Unfortunately for me, I have struggled with anxiety and depression since that moment in the NICU when I had my first panic attack.

    I am working on my anxiety with medication and therapy and I must say that I feel the best that I have in three years. Now, my life has changed and all the things that I did the first time around aren’t necessairly working anymore. I am stuck in this place where I have no confidence in my ability to lose the weight again. To get strong again. To be susscessful again. At the time in my life where I should be confident in my abilities as a mother and as a wife, I am the least confident I have ever been. I am tired of being afraid of failure. I’m not looking to be a size 0. I want to be strong and confident. I want to show my children what they are capable of by showing myself what I am capable of.

    Is twelve miles and obstacles even possible for a girl that weighs 240 pounds and doesn’t currently run? I don’t know but I am sure as heck willing to look my fear in the face and try! :)

    Lets do Kentucky in October!

    • RoniNoone

      And that’s what it’s all about Megan! Consider yourself entered. More info soon!

  • Teresa Langley

    This is awesome! After attending my 25 high school reunion a few years ago, I hated all the pictures of myself. I took charge of my health and changed my lifestyle to loose almost 50 pounds. I have kept it over for over 3 years now. I have since run 7 half marathons and my first FULL this past October!!! Not bad for a 46 year old mom of 4 and grandmother!! I so want to do a Tough Mudder but I can’t find anyone that wants to do one with me!!!! I live in MD so the closet event to me is WVA at the end of April. Be my Buddy Roni!!

    • RoniNoone

      Not bad at all Teresa! I’d say pretty amazing! I’m actually 99% sure I’m doing this one already! Consider yourself entered. More info soon!

  • Cheryll Collins

    I’m fighting with myself about whether I should actually type this… The Tough Mudder scares the crap out of me! I have lost about 40 pounds in the past three years and run several half marathons. But I haven’t done much to develop my upper body or core strength until the last month or so. I’ve been taking strength training classes at my gym and now I can do two full push ups! haha (I couldn’t even do one before so I’m kinda proud of that!) Still terrified of THE WALL… but the Tough Mudder in WA State isn’t until October. So, I think I have time to train for it. I’d love to do this race with you, Roni! (I think!!) EEEEEEE!

    • RoniNoone

      You have so much time! Start training you are in the running! :) More info soon!

  • MiZFit

    hmmm IM SO CLOSE :-)

    • RoniNoone

      OMG I didn’t even think! I’m staying at Pechanga Resort & Casino. Close??

  • Kara Thinksthinblogger

    I do love a physical challenge, so I’m glad you’ve now put the tough mudder on my radar (and there is an event close to where I live!). I don’t think I’m ready yet; but I’m confident that I will be within two years!

    • RoniNoone

      It’s such a great even to have as a goal. Set your site on one. You’ll get there!

  • Paula allen

    Hey roni, it’s Paula aka “your twin except 10 years older and 2 extra kids! Remember me from our little chats about night time snacking, Wednesday weigh ins, and you were my first tweet response. I just did the super spartan last week and iam training for the LA marathon next month! I want to do the tough mudder with you , just to hang out , meet you and kick some a$$. Seriously, we are super similar! I would love to do the Arizona or Oregon ones. I have boys at college in both of those states and I would love for them to see me do one… I would pay for myself but would love to be your partner! Think about it!

    • RoniNoone

      Are there any others you can do? Arizona is way too soon (like next week!) and Oregon is the week before FitBloggin. Just can’t make it happen. :(

  • Laura James

    Wish I lived a bit closer! Australia is a little far to travel, however when I register for my first tough mudder know that you’re my inspiration!

    • RoniNoone

      They have on in Australia and it’s a goal of mine to get there. One day!!

  • Carrie

    I can’t run anymore due to knee issues, but I wanted to tell you how awesome it is that you are doing this! This is exactly the kind of race I would have done back in my racing days.

    • RoniNoone

      Thanks! So sorry about your knee.. that is a fear of mine. More aches and pains as I get older. :)

  • Christina savage

    I just want to say that this is amazing… what a great way to inspire others and pay in forward! I m doing my first tough mudder this june in va beach with 3 other gal pals…. we are all in our 30s

    • RoniNoone

      I’m planning on running that one if it works out!

  • Jen Dunlop

    I have just started this comment about 6 times trying to be a ‘writer’ and I am not. I am a mom, a wife, a middle school teacher, a reader, and a gal training for a triathlon. I have followed your blog for what seems like forever…..your blog might the first blog I ever even saw. :) I am still working on me weight. I have lost 35 lbs over the last year. I am an eating more whole foods and training for a triathlon and trying to live my life and be a healthy example to my 3 little kiddos. I usually take what you write and process and then about 6 months later try something….I just started adding chia seeds to my morning oatmeal smoothies. You help me as a whole person not just the food side or the exercise side….but being a wife and mom and an all around healthy strong woman that I aspire to be. Thank you.
    Ok, Tough Mudder. Not something I have really thought too much about. But as I looked at the website it looks so fun. I would love to do the Oregon event with you. It would be amazing. Some of the best decisions I have made are ones I didn’t fester over or overanalyze. Pick me, pick me. :)

    • RoniNoone

      Ugh, I’m so sorry Jen, I can’t do the Oregon one in June. It’s really bumming me out! However, I’ll be in Oregon the following week for FitBloggin’ and I’d love for you to come. Is there another mudder that works for you?

  • Stephanie

    I am just writing to say I think you are an amazing inspiration! I did my first Warrior Dash (5k version of tough mudder) last year and loved it so much I signed up for this year as soon as it was over. Then in December I found out I was expecting so no Warrior Dash for me this year, instead I get to be there for my SIL’s to cheer them on. Cant wait. Hope whoever your TM buddy is you both have a blast!

    • RoniNoone


  • Autumn

    I ran Tough Mudder Wisconsin last year… and loved it! It now ranks in the top 10 best things I’ve done in my life. I didn’t do it fast, and I did it alone (with help from other Mudder teams) but I did it. Anyone who wants to… do it now, don’t wait!

    • RoniNoone

      That. Is. AWESOME! I feel the same way. Life changing!

  • Rachel

    I love this! I am signed up for 1 Mudder this year (Boston) after doing my first last year (Mt. Snow in VT). I’m also planning on signing up for Pittsburgh but haven’t done it yet. I think this is an awesome, inspirational, wonderful idea. I have never felt as accomplished as I did post-Mudder, and I think it’s such a gift to give oneself (putting in the training time, and then gritting through the event.) And a wonderful gift to give your readers!!

    • RoniNoone

      I’m glad I’m not the only crazy person who wants to these things over and over again. :)

  • Kim Fearn

    Why do I want to run a Tough Mudder? Well – I actually don’t. Well, that’s not true. I don’t know what I want…. what I do know is I am petrafied to do anything out of my comfort zone. I try to find all the reasons NOT to succeed at overcoming my heath and fitness hurdles in life. Why? Probably because if I move past the first hurdle, I won’t have any more excuses to hide behind.

    I always feel more secure when I do things with others…. especially when I go walking or exercising… for some reason I won’t let others down and will always show up to be a workout buddy – but I am willing to let myself down daily if I am left to myself.
    I have never pushed past that point of doing it just for me.

    Commiting to training for something this crazy would be insane – and completely out of my comfort zone. But I wouldn’t want to let you down – so it would be the perfect push…. KNOWING I was going to run it with you – but having to prep for it by myself… holy crap – this sounds nuts….

    If you pick me – a 45 year old 215 pound woman who would start training immediately if she knew she was picked…. because today, Feb 5 – I can’t walk up two flights of stairs without getting winded – and by September in St Louis MO – It would be a miracle to run 12 miles and face my fears by doing the obstacles.

    I have followed your site for years – and regardless of the outcome – I like many am grateful for the chance to hang out with you!
    So whatta ya say? St. Louis in September? :O)

    • RoniNoone

      OMG Kim! Consider yourself entered and start training because even if you don’t win this contest we are running that Tough Mudder baby. I’ll make it happen. It’s on my calender!

    • Kim Fearn

      I think I just puked! Twice!!! Gulp!

  • Mehgann

    I’m scared to death at the prospect that I could actually be the one picked, but you describe me so well that I am compelled to write and force myself to take the chance anyway. I am a lurker…a commenter, a reader, an “I wish I could do that, but I can’t because I’m so darn fat” whiner, an “avid believer that everyone is amazing and should post pictures of themselves whether or not they look good in them, but for heaven’s sake, don’t do it yourself” hypocrite, the girl who can’t wear a tank top in pubic, the girl who doesn’t go out with her friends as much as she wants because there might be a camera and a picture MIGHT end up on facebook for everyone in all the land to see, and someone who so DESPERATELY wants to change all of that but doesn’t know how. So here’s for taking that first step…all the while hoping that something happens between now and that dreaded click on the “post” icon…

    • Mehgann

      Oh, and Tri-Cities, Boston, or anywhere else in the Northeast would be best for me! My only restriction is that I can’t do it in August.

    • RoniNoone

      I think I can make either of those work so consider yourself entered! More info soon!

  • Robin Nicole

    I want to be your Tough Mudder partner! I have been on my journey to health and fitness for 4 years. After the birth of my 6th child at the age of 31 I decided it was critical that I get into better shape. I need to be able to keep up and live a long life for my children.

    During my journey I not only became healthier and lost over 100 pounds but I became an athlete ! I became a very active member in a bootcamp program , I ran and placed in several 5ks, I became a triathlete and this Alabama girl completed a 1/2 marathon in New York City last April.

    My children are so very proud of me and they have been able be to be at the finish line of my triathlon and cheered me on during my 1/2 marathon. Looking back through our family pictures my decision to better my health also helped the kids. My older children thinned out and became healthier by default. The changes I made in my cooking and grocery store purchases also was a benefit to my kids.

    In the last year my personal life took some major life changes. Some days have been harder to bear than others. I believe finding my own happiness and inner warrior have been so very important and I try to still challenge myself.

    I am willing to do a Tough Mudder that fits into your schedule. I would think I will need some time to train. I work out regularly , still run, lift, cycle each week. But did you say jump off a high platform into a lake?? Can we agree for you to push me??

    To whomever you pick I am sure it will be a wonderful experience! During each new event I always have a moment that brings tears to my eyes when I remember how far I have come. I always look forward to the next chapter in my journey.

    • RoniNoone

      OMG the jump is so stinking scary!! But I’ve done it 3 times now, and I’ll do it again while freaking out. I’ll enter you and we can pick a location. Are there any near you?

  • Julie Phelan Beaver

    I want to run a Tough Mudder with youbecause wee have a lot in common. I too lost over 100 ounds after having my son. Since the,n I have been a runner and triathlete, but never a Tough Mudder. I find your blog motivating and inspiring. I check it most morning before I head out for my 4:30 am run. :) I have 2 sons now with the younges being 2. Seeing you with your boys folding clothes, cooking andd cleaning gives me a little relief knowing that this roller coaster I am on is not always perfect. :)

    • RoniNoone

      Which one could you do? Let’s see if we can do it. And HELLO 100 lbs is A-mazing! Congrats! Love the name of your blog too!

  • triza

    OMG…i was just looking at the site this week and thinking if my old 47 year old butt wants to do this and I do??? Doing a half on Feb 24th but after that I think I will join you…

    • RoniNoone

      Do it! Do it! :)

    • RoniNoone

      Oh! and good luck in the half!

  • Raluca

    Pick ME to do the Oregon Tough Mudder on June 15/16!

    I discovered your site a little over a year ago, and you have inspired me so much! I ran my first half marathon at Bryce Canyon, UT in July of last year because of you. We moved our family (husband Zack, son Oliver – 4 and daughter Lily – 2) to Portland, OR because of that half marathon!!!! I’ve done a couple of small mud runs (Warrior Dash and Scorpion Warrior) and I LOVED them! I’ve wanted to do a Mud Run since I saw your first post about them – way more hard core than the 2 that I did, but I am up for the challenge and love being motivated for something.

    The truth is, I could probably sign up for the Tough Mudder myself…..but you are my Justin Beiber! I’m a Roniholic! Haha, I know that sounds stalkerish, but honestly, you have influenced my life so much that I would love to be able to thank you in person.

    • RoniNoone

      Ohh Pooo! I really don’t think I can do the Oregon one. :( It’s 2 weeks before FitBloggin’ and I’ll be in full planning mode. However, I will actually be in Oregon the next week! Let me know if there are any other locations that work for you. If not, come to FitBloggin at the end of June. We’ll be at The Nines in Portland!!

  • Rebecca

    Roni, I’d love to do the Buffalo Tough Mudder(July 27) with you! I am a 31-year-old mother of two girls, ages 3 and 4, and social work graduate student. Growing up, I was always the cliche chunky kid; accident-prone (have broken 7 bones), asthmatic bookworm. I married an athletic, outdoor-loving guy and always felt somewhat ashamed to be seen with him because of how obviously fit he was, and how obviously unfit I was! One year after my youngest daughter was born (spring 2011), I decided to start running with C25K. It was slow going at first, but by July I was logging 5-6 miles at a time and had lost about 15 pounds. I decided on a whim to run a half-marathon that fall and by October 2011 I had lost about 30 pounds due both to running and feeding my body whole, nutrient-rich foods. For the first time, eating food was about fuel and pleasure, not guilt and regret. I have run two other half marathons and ran my first marathon in September 2012.

    For me, exercise has been about claiming my body for the first time in my life. Being able to run, hike, chase my children and be active with my husband are secondary, though, to the peace and joy that I have found from treating my body with respect and taking time for myself every day. My kids and my husband would tell you that I’m a completely different person on the INSIDE than I was three years ago.

    I’ve been flirting with the idea of doing a Tough Mudder, but have shied away as it would be a huge challenge for me. In school, the annual event I dreaded much more than exams was the obstacle course in gym class. I needed special help to get over the elements and was completely mortified by the experience. Even now that I’ve achieved a certain level of fitness, the idea of doing obstacles like that fills me with butterflies. But part of why I’d even consider it is due to the community-focus that those events embody; you’re not just in it to finish yourself, its about something bigger. I love that its about NOT taking yourself too seriously – its about having fun, letting your inner kid shine through, and getting dirty all while giving your body and mind a legit challenge!

    Props to you for taking on so many of them. Thank you for showing the rest of us how to have fun again!

    • RoniNoone

      Buffalo works for me! Consider yourself entered. More info soon!

  • Ann

    I hope I am not too late! I have gone back and forth with myself over this for..well a week now. I am finally ready to write this….

    I have been following you online for the past 6 years now and you have been an amazing inspiration to me. I always felt like I “got” what you were saying about breaking the cycle of yo-yo dieting but yet I continued to struggle with it myself. I lost 35 lbs only to gain 70, I lost 60 lbs only to gain 90. Each time I thought I had set myself up for lifelong success, only to backslide and gain more than ever before. Six months ago I found myself at my highest weight ever, miserable in my own skin, unable to participate in activities I used to enjoy. I decided once again that something had to change, and that something was me. I have lost 70 lbs in the last 6 months (doctor supervised, but not surgical) and have radically changed my entire thought process around food and fitness. While I felt like I “got” what you were talking about before….now I know that I get it. Food is fuel. Yes, it tastes great and can be really enjoyable but the most important part of what you put in your body is what you get back out of it. My self esteem is no longer tied to how my body looks, but what my body can do now that it is fitter and stronger than ever. I am not at my lowest weight ever, actually I’m about 35 lbs from it, but I am at my strongest both physically and emotionally

    So, why do I want to run a Tough Mudder with you? Well, for one I would love to say thank you in person, for all the tough love and brutal honesty you have put out there for all of us over the years. Secondly, I’m ready to take my fitness journey to the next level, break out of my comfort zone. I can see no better way to do that than with the woman who has helped push me in that direction all these years!

    How about it? Kentucky in October? I sure hope so!

    • RoniNoone

      Oh Ann you brought me to tears. I can definitively do that weekend! Consider yourself entered in the contest. More info soon!

  • Caroline A. Robbins

    OK, I may be a bit late to the party… And since I’m up here in Canada land, I am likely not on the radar for your travels, but i wanted to share the why’s of what I am doing. I shall do so by pointing you to the following three links (to my blog). Click them in order:




    and then


    I’m in training for May, and conquering my fears now so I can re-conquer them there.


    • RoniNoone

      DARN! I would so go up and run with you but I have a conflict that weekend. :( You’re posts hit close to home you can do this.. you WILL do this!!

  • Missy

    Alright, alright, I’ve been debating even entering this because I don’t any awe-inspiring story to share. Right now, I look back at pictures after my first pregnancy and think “wow, I was so skinny”. Was I really THAT skinny? No. Does it matter? No. The truth is, over the past 5 years, I’ve become stronger… I might not be as thin as I’d like to be (chipping away slowly but surely) but I’ve managed through more emotional and mental junk than I thought I’d ever be able to handle. When I started following your blog (thanks Jen), I was completely inspired to start running. After that came lots of 5K’s, and then a half marathon 5 months after having my 2nd baby (thanks for sharing that one with me!). Tough Mudder was something I always thought was only for ex-military and really buff guys. You’ve shown me that’s not the case. I love seeing you do it, and I love seeing all the different shapes and sizes of people that do it too. THAT is inspiring. Now, let’s be real, all of the obstacles scare the bejeezus out of me. The electric shocks? I cringe just thinking about it. BUT, everytime I turn around, I find myself looking at the website, looking up videos, and thinking “holy crap, I want to do that…. I CAN do that.” I would absolutely love the challenge. And I would love to have you there to push and drag me along if necessary :-) I’m thinking Philadelphia, VA Beach, or the Mid-Atlantic Fall…. Maybe even the Mid-Atlantic Spring if I really get my butt in gear :-)


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