Obstacle Race Training: Strong Legs, Strong Finish


Taking on an obstacle race will present you with a number of unique challenges.  While there is almost no way to predict exactly what these challenges will be, I am certain they will have at least one thing in common. Leg or lower body strength will be essential to successfully dominating these barriers.

Try completing the 5 mile course, uphill, over, around and through obstacles with weak legs dragging you down.  Not how you envisioned the race going?  Avoid the embarrassing experience of having to be carried off the course by properly training your legs to carry you to the finish line.

Here’s how.

Obstacle athletes and mud runners should complete hybrid workouts that combine strength and cardio into one workout that will build leg strength and athleticism.

Start with functional and dynamic movements like kettlebell swings and explosive movements like jump squats, burpees and box jumps.

Next, pair these strength based movement with running intervals, hill sprints or bleacher climbs.

Then, add in exercises that will improve the skills you will need to call upon during the race.  Look to include sled pushes/pulls, tire flips, farmer’s carry, rope climbs and bear crawls in your workouts.

Finally, train outdoors in a setting similar to the race.  Try running on trails, through the mud and creek.

When you are ready, give this workout a try.

3-5 Rounds

Weighted Sled Push @ 50 yards

Run 400m

20x Kettlebell Swing

Weighted Sled Pull @ 50 yards

Run 400m

20x KB Thruster

Weighted Sled Bear Crawl @ 50 yards

Run 400m

20x KB Swings

Weighted Sled Backwards Drag

Run 400m

20x KB Thruster

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Joe Vennare

Joe Vennare is an accomplished fitness entrepreneur who develops, instructs and writes about innovative fitness programs. He is the co-founder of Hybrid Athlete, Kettlebell Cardio, and Race Day Domination.

When he is not working, Joe is a sponsored multi-sport athlete training for or competing in triathlons, ultra-marathons and obstacle course races.


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