Geoff Hamrick and Phillip Dobbins, Clays own ironmen.

Geoff Hamrick and Phillip Dobbins, Clays own ironmen.

Billed as one of the toughest events on the planet and appropriately called the Tough Mudder, it is a challenge for most people who consider themselves to be in shape and having a heart that will beat no matter what you put it through. The event is a part of the Wounded Warrior Project and has raised over five million dollars for the project worldwide. Tough Mudder is a challenge on the human body like no other with obstacles that venture on the ridiculous with names like Devils Beard, Trench Warfare, Arctic Enema, Fire Walker and Electroshock Therapy, just to name a few, are sure to challenge the toughest individual. The Tough Mudder event challenges more than one million people worldwide each year. It isn’t a contest of places but a contest of your own will and the will of those around you. It is an event that doesn’t pit man against man or woman against woman, but a challenge that through adversity you help each other when the going gets tough.
That being said, there were three brave souls that dared to defeat the obstacle course from Clay County. Not three individuals that are barely into life with the fortitude of a tank, nope these men saw the beast and heard the call of the wild and had to quench their thirst for dominance. Geoff Hamrick, age 50, Philip Dobbins, somewhere close to 50, and Cooter Thorne, also closer to 50 than 20, all in the best physical shape of their lives took on the course and were determined to finish the twelve mile course. They started training in the spring months and trained hard to reach their best potential, proving with diligence, a glass of raw eggs and hard work you can do the unthinkable for their age group, and that is finish without the help of an ambulance and a couple of tanks of oxygen. Finish they did; they were the first to cross the finish line in their wave group dominating the grueling course in a little over two hours when the average is four hours.
For me, it is an inspiration to all who are knocking on the door of extinction. These men proved that there is still time left in the old bones to run and play in the mud and that old age is just one’s imagination. There is another run in October, and they will have at it again. If you are interested, give them a call. I am sure they will help lead you into greatness. So, in the meantime, to prepare for some of the obstacles, get out and swing on some grape vines, stick your fingers into live sockets, become one with mud and by all means necessary, run your guts out; you’re going to need the stamina. I will get started just as soon as I get past my cheese burger. Congratulations to these men of men! I will see you in the next mud hole.

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