Three men, one hamstring and a lot of mud!

On May 20th 2017 three men stepped out of their hotel rooms, and ventured into the grounds of Belvoir castle. After months of ‘training’ we approached the start line of the Tough Mudder course with one goal, to claim the coveted finisher’s orange headband. But before the gun went off we made one solemn pact - whatever horrors we would face that day, however many shoes would be lost forever in those muddy lagoons, no one would be left behind.

At first it seemed our team had the upper hand, gliding over the first few obstacles with ease and panache. This seemed too easy. Suddenly, at mile 5, we approached the aptly named “Everest”, a 15’ curved greasy wall. Many had tried to conquer it and ended up in a heap at its slippery bottom, but now it was our turn. With a swift kick and a jump Jamie reached for the top, but then, disaster, a searing pain in his right thigh - his hamstring was torn! Many at this point would throw in the towel, but this team did not know when to quit. With some improvised taping, and all the available painkillers they continued on.

2 obstacles later and the course was to claim its next team member, Chris, who was paralysed with cramp whilst stuck in a vertical tube filled with fast flowing water. Granted this was an inconvenient place for such an injury, but this course has no respect for time or place. After some prolonged stretching, our team, now pretty battered and bruised continued on. Then the rain started, horizontal in direction, freezing in temperature. It was my turn to suffer. As the hypothermia set in and I slowly turned blue Chris and Jamie hurried me along - we were not going to be beaten.

Finally the finish line was in sight. Unfortunately it could only be seen through a forest of electrical cables, dangling down over the final few meters of the course - the dreaded “electroshock therapy”. Emboldened by our previous victories we charged forwards. Moments later we were found convulsing uncontrollably on the floor secondary to the multiple shocks we were receiving. We wriggled onwards.

As we crawled, hopped and shivered over that finish line, and were crowned with our bands of orange, we knew that, like Jamie’s hopes of being a professional athlete, our ordeal was over. And most importantly of all we had raised £3,000 to help build a new home for Steven (pictured), a seven year old disabled Ugandan boy and his elderly grandmother.

Thanks team - looking forward to doing it again next year!

Rick Hutchinson


21st July 2017

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