Training for Mud Runs, Part 3: Anaerobic Conditioning
Mud runs are designed to push your body to the limit. You are forced to run for several miles and overcome obstacles, all while dealing with the worst terrain imaginable.
If you want to finish a race, you must condition our body in advance. This means more than simply running long distances. You have to train your anaerobic energy system, which is responsible for short bursts of strength, speed and power.
One of the best ways to develop your anaerobic endurance is with the Training for Warriors Hurricane System, developed by Martin Rooney. This system builds your anaerobic capacity in a way that also improves your aerobic endurance. It will prepare you for situations in a race in which you have to conquer an obstacle and follow it up with a long-distance run—a pattern that is often repeated during mud runs.
During a Hurricane session, you create disturbances in your body by fully taxing your anaerobic system. The aerobic system comes into play during recovery, when you repay your anaerobic system for the work it put in. The recovery will increase your long-term aerobic endurance.
The Hurricane System
The Hurricane System has five categories, each progressively harder than the last:
- Category 1: Sprinting for an allotted time
- Category 2: Sprinting combined with two bodyweight exercises
- Category 3: Sprinting combined with two light resistance exercises (e.g., Bicep Curls)
- Category 4: Sprinting combined with two heavy resistance exercises. (e.g., Bench Press)
- Category 5: Sprinting combined with two strongman exercises (e.g., Sled Pulls)
Here is an example of a Category 2 Hurricane that will help you prepare for your next mud run.
- Sets 1-3: Sprint 20 seconds + Knee-to-Elbow Push-Ups x 20 + Hanging Leg Raises x 10
- Sets 4-6: Sprint 20 seconds + Mountains Climbers x 30 + Hanging Alternating Leg Raises x 10 each leg
- Sets 7-9: Sprint 20 seconds + Burpees x 20 + Rope Climb Sit-Ups x 20
This is only one example of a Hurricane workout. Get creative with your exercise selection and how you sequence them. Start with Category 1 and gradually progress as you get into better shape.
Do a Hurricane session once per week and you will be able to conquer the mud run you are preparing for.