I’m going about this in a different way. I know I talk about MovNat a lot, but I have to highlight it again. I saw so many people struggle with obstacles that I found relatively easy; and not just because of strength, but also skill and strategy.
So how do you dominate a super badass hardcore event? The short answer is learn MovNat! For a detailed breakdown, keep reading…
On the non-physical side, important principles to bring with you are awareness and efficiency. I bet there were hundreds of sprained ankles on the course (my cousin’s included) from the sketchy terrain. There were probably thousands of crampy/spasmy muscles from lack of efficiency, improper pacing and/or nutrition strategy.
On the physical side, trail running and hill climbing/descending (often overlooked but a huge part of our Tough Mudder Training) are the most important skills to have. If you are a mule or a gazelle then you’ll be fine. If you’re also part monkey, then you’ll get to avoid burpees! Below is the list of MovNat skills that I used on this EPIC course. I highly recommend checking out their YouTube channel and practicing these skills!
- Efficient running uphill and downhill (aka trotting).
- Perception walking – used in thick mud, or when wading through water to avoid slips, falls, foot entrapment, etc.
- Hinged walk, stepping over, ducking under – used to deal with fallen trees in the woods.
- Inverted crawl and tripod transitions – used in the rocky, muddy downhill sections of the trails.
- Shoulder crawl and push-pull crawl for going under barbed wire/nets/etc.
- Deadlift, lapping, and shouldering – sets you up for carrying, switching shoulders, and lapping gives your arms a break instead of putting the object on the ground.
- Chest carry and shoulder carry – it’d be impossible to do “too much carrying” in your training for this event. Use the interlock grip and wrist grip whenever possible.
- Side stroke swimming – freestyle/crawling is tough with a hydration pack and doggy-paddling looks silly.
- Front and lateral swing traverse – when you can’t/don’t need to power through and you have a sold grip (i.e. rings, pipe traverse, tarzan swing).
- Front and lateral power traverse – used at monkey bars, pipe traverse, and a little on the tarzan swing.
- Balancing walk and leg swing jumps at balance obstacles
- Climbup and muscle up – used on the walls and cargo nets
- Depth jumps – used to land safely from the walls
- Spear throw
- Hook traverse – used on the rope over the pond.
- Backward sprawls are way better than burpees!
Other Skills used:
- Tootsie rolls (that’s what we call the lateral roll under the barbed wire).
- Rope climbing – if you have a strong grip, you can get away with a little inefficiency.
Overall, I’m very happy with how I performed at the Beast! My goal was to have fun and do zero burpees. I definitely had a blast! In fact, I’m still high! Unfortunately I came up short on the 2nd spear throw…burpee total = 35 (5 were mandatory at the Atlas Stone carry).
Here’s what slaying the Beast looks like from a GoPro: