Training for Mud Runs, Part 2: Strength Workout

February 27, 2013 | Rob DeCillis

Must See Running Videos

In my previous article, I discussed the need to set up a training schedule for your obstacle course race. In this segment, I explain how to create a total-body strength workout that will prepare you for the rigors of obstacles and mud.

Before you start, you need to consider the different athletic attributes you will need to complete the race, including jumping, climbing, running, changing direction, crawling and others. You have to train each of these attributes in order to successfully complete the course—hopefully in a short time.

For the two strength training days on the schedule, exercise selection is critical. It's important to perform lifts that engage several muscles and joints at the same time, to build maximum strength in the movements you will use on the course. Great exercises include Deadlifts, Squats, Overhead Presses, Rows and Olympic lifts.

Also, you should perform bodyweight exercises so you learn how to control your own weight and build your muscular endurance. These include Push-Ups, Pull-Ups, Dips, Inverted Rows and Burpees, as well as animal movements like Bear Crawls and Frog Hops.

Full-Body Strength Workout for Obstacle Course Race

This workout will build your strength, improve your conditioning and help you perform at your peak in your obstacle course race.

Dynamic Warm-Up

Animal Movements

Trap Bar Deadlift: 5x3 and Push-Ups: 5x20

Single-Arm DB Press: 3x3 and Pull-Ups: 3x8-10

Kettlebell Front Squats: 3x8

Inverted Rows: 3x12 and Hanging Knee Raises: 3x10

Perform the grouped compound and bodyweight exercises in superset fashion. This not only will increase your strength, but will elevate your heart rate to improve your conditioning.


Rob DeCillis
- Rob DeCillis got his start in the strength and conditioning world in 2006, when he had the opportunity to train an IFL heavyweight fighter. After...
Rob DeCillis
- Rob DeCillis got his start in the strength and conditioning world in 2006, when he had the opportunity to train an IFL heavyweight fighter. After...
Must See
NFL Wide Receiver Randall Cobb Outworks Everyone
Views: 28,434,823
Evan Longoria's Hitting Drills
Views: 9,798,759
Michael Jordan: Mind of a Champion
Views: 546,428

Featured Videos

A Day in the Life of NBA D-League Star Seth Curry Views: 69,070
Kevin Love's Cone Hop Basketball Shooting Drill Views: 9,456
Eastbay Path to the Pros Episode 2: Laying the Groundwork Views: 135,797
Load More


STACK Fitness

Everything you need to be fitter than ever

STACK Conditioning

Sport-specific conditioning programs

Coaches and Trainers

Tips and advice for coaches and trainers


Latest issues of STACK Magazine


Women's sports workout, nutrition and lifestyle advice


Gaming, entertainment and tech news

Basic Training

Military-style training for athletes


Find the latest news relevant to athletes

Most Popular Videos

Perfect Dwyane Wade's Signature Euro Step
Views: 1,308,963
What Ryan Hall Eats for Breakfast
Views: 795,300
STACK Fitness Weekly: How To Do a Muscle-Up
Views: 778,698
Greg Nixon's Hill Training Program
Views: 705,804
Roy Hibbert 540 lbs Deadlift
Views: 1,561,942

Load More
More Cool Stuff You'll Like

The Only 2 Running Diet Rules You Need to Know

5 Keys and A Workout Plan for An Awesome 5K

Weight Training for Runners: 3 Full-Body Moves

8 Things I Wish I Knew Before I Ran My First Marathon

7 Tips to Help First-Time Marathoners Avoid Common Mistakes

4 Steps to Win Your Next Race

3 Things You Must Do Before Trying Minimalist Running Shoes

An Introduction to Strength Training for Runners

The Obstacle Course Racer's Guide to Fixing Muscle Cramps

8-Week Spartan Beast Training Program

STACK Challenge: Army Two-Mile Run

Don't Choke on Race Day: Tips to Run a Better Race

Off-Season Triathlon Training Tips and Workout Program

How to Prepare for the Spartan Race and Other Mud Runs

Guide to Common Running Terminology

Learn the Secrets of Tapering

7-Year Old Triathlete Sets 5K Record

9 Things Every Trail Runner Should Have

3 Crucial Strength Principles Endurance Runners Should Follow

Are You Ready for a Tough Mudder?

10 Fresh Tunes for Your Running Playlist

Be Ready to Run a 5K in 6-8 Weeks

5 Ways to Freshen Up Your Run

Why Jogging Is Counterproductive

Ultramarathon Runner Stephanie Howe's 7 Training Secrets

The Exercise Every Runner Must Do

Tired of Tiring During Runs? Try These Jogging Pace Drills

You're Doing It Wrong: Running

Running Tips for True Beginners

6 5K Tips for a Great Running Experience

5 Questions Runners Should Ask Themselves During Every Run

Get Geared Up for the Wall Jump Obstacle

7 Endurance Tips From Ultramarathon Runner Ian Sharman

5 Un-Smooth Habits That Ruin Runners

Are You Ready for the Arctic Enema?

The Most Effective Form of Endurance Training

Hunter McIntyre Rises Above the Competition

How to Design a Running Schedule That Fits Your Life

10 Fresh Running Destinations in the U.S.

Maximize Your Trail Running

How to Control Your Breathing During an Obstacle Race

How to Start Your Barefoot Leg Workout

6 Best On-the-Go Snacks for Runners