I’ll be running my third Tough Mudder in Seattle this weekend, and with every event I’ve learned more about what shoes, socks, and clothing works well.. and what doesn’t. Here’s what I’ll be wearing at this year’s 2015 Seattle Tough Mudder.
Best Tough Mudder Shoes
A good set of trail running shoes is idea for Tough Mudder obstacles. And my favorite trail running shoes right now are the Salomon Speedcross 3. They’re made from water-resistant nylon, available in a wide variety of colors, drain water quickly, dry quickly, feature speed laces that hide away completely, and have an awesome rubber outsole with traction lugs that give confidence on trails and an advantage when climbing up muddy walls.
In addition to shoes, I recommend you consider finding a comfortable set of Superfeet insoles. They come in different “colors,” which correspond to different amounts of arch support, based on your individual needs. I’ve been running with Superfeet “blues” for years, and they make a huge difference for me over stock insoles.
Best Tough Mudder Socks
I have two different pairs of socks I currently like. Both are comfortable, quick drying, offer good compression, and help fight blisters while you run. They’re cheap enough that you can buy both and wear the ones most comfortable for you.
Best Mudder Gloves
I consider gloves a “must-have” for these types of obstacle courses. I prefer “half-finger” gloves: they drain quicker but still let you have a good tactile feel for the obstacles while protecting your hands and improving your grip. I wear the Under Armour Men’s CTR Trainer HF Gloves, and love them. They also make a women’s version of this same glove. They’re made of micro-fiber and polyurethane, have mesh on the front and back, and super-grippy palm pads. I wear them all year long when working out with ropes or pull-up bars.
Best Tough Mudder Shorts
I actually wear two pairs of shorts on race day: a tight base layer to protect me from debris, and a looser outer layer to help protect from bumps and bruises on obstacles. For the base layer, I recommend the MudGear Base Layer Boxer Brief.
For the outer layer, I like Under Armor Reflex 10″ shorts.
Best Tough Mudder Shirt
My go-to shirt for race day is the Under Armour Men’s TM Obstacle Fitted Short Sleeve. It rocks the Tough Mudder colors, and has mesh sides and back for venting when I’m hot, and quick drying when I’m muddy and wet.
Best Tough Mudder Recovery Garments
I’m updating this article a couple days after I originally published it, because I was reminded of another essential piece of gear. My final gear recommendation isn’t actually something you’d wear at the Tough Mudder… but rather after the Tough Mudder. Compression garments have been shown to shorten recovery times after extreme physical exertion, and my favorite brand for compression gear is Australian-made Skins. In fact, I’m wearing the Men’s A400 Compression Long Tights and A400 Short Sleeve Top right now, because I ran the 2015 Seattle Tough Mudder yesterday. They really work.
I’ve also heard good things about Skins “Ry” series of compression garments, which are apparently designed just for recovery and not also for workouts, such as the Ry400 Recovery Long Tights and Ry400 Recovery Long Sleeve Top (I’ve linked to the men’s versions of these, but they make women’s versions, too).
There you have it! These are my favorite pieces of gear to wear during the Tough Mudder. Got your own favorites? Tell me about them in the comments below!