The mud, electrical wires, and cold plunges should leave you beat up. But your gear? It has one job: to get you prepared and keep you protected on race day. These 12 products are happiest when muddy, but shockingly effective in all conditions (electric shock included).
General Manufacturing Tybee Jump Rope ($65)
Jumping rope is a decidedly simple way to get fit. This pared-down, durable version is all you need, with wrapped walnut handles and a leather cord.
2XU Men's Elite Short Sleeve Compression Top ($100)
This 2XU top minimizes chafing better than any we tested, thanks to flatlock seams and a quick-drying fabric. We also like it as an extra shield when rolling under barbed wire or shimmying through drainpipes. Bonus: UPF 50-plus sun protection kept us from frying on sunny days.
Goruck Sandbags (from $65)
Designed by a former Green Beret and his civilian partner, these bags are sewn in the USA from supertough reinforced Cordura and feature padded handles. Huck one over a shoulder, grab two for a farmer walk, or carry the 120-pound monster with your teammates.
Reebok All Terrain Shoes (from $110)
Designed with input from elite obstacle racers Amelia Boone and Hunter McIntyre, the All Terrain quickly dumps water through smartly placed mesh drainage ports, while the toothy midfoot grips ropes and the reinforced toe gives superior traction on steep, slippery surfaces. Choose the low-drop Sprint version for shorter distance races and the more cushioned Super for longer events.
Ironskull Fitness Kettlebell (from $60)
It’s hard to beat kettlebell workouts for full-body fitness training. Ironskull’s ghoulish design (with 24 paint jobs to choose from) offers the right attitude adjustment for obstacle racers. Weights range from 18 to 240 pounds.
Muscle Ropes Aftershock 1.5" Rope (from $120)
Battle ropes offer a low-impact, high-intensity workout and, most important for obstacle racers, increase grip strength for better performance on rope climbs, monkey bars, rings, and tractor pulls.
Dynamax Medicine Ball (from $74)
The vinyl-coated shell and abundant padding make this 20-pound ball easy to throw and catch at high speeds. Chuck it at a partner, the ground, or a wall, or hold it during squats and high knee lifts.
Defy Ultimate Gym Bag ($110)
Thanks to a tough Cordura exterior and heavy-duty nylon liner, you can trust this bag to protect your post-race layers from their greatest threat: you, soaked and covered in mud, possibly bleeding.
Nike Tech Super 1MM Full-Zip Men's Hoodie ($150)
Make sure you actually get warm during your pre-race warm-up routine with this soft and thin cotton-poly hoodie. The kangaroo pockets keep hands toasty between burpee sets, while the large zippered stash pouch holds gels, keys, and other essentials.
Mad Grip Pro Palm Hi Viz Gloves ($11)
Cut the tips off for Spider-Man-like grip on rope climbs and monkey bars. The durable, reinforced material safeguards hands against blisters and burns.
SandBell Free Weight ($14)
Made of soft neoprene, a SandBell sandbag free weight is the do-it-all tool of your exercise room. Use it in pairs like dumbells, throw it like a medicine ball, or swing it like a kettlebell. The company also guarantees the weight to be "bust-proof," so you can slam it into the ground when you need to release pent-up frustration.
TRX Tactical Suspension Trainer ($300)
Designed with feedback from U.S. troops deployed in the field, this TRX Tactical setup is for athletes who want to up their durability and performance. The kit focuses on developing mobility, strength, and agility. The included training regimen can be customized to anyone from the novice obstacle racer to the world's Toughest Mudder.