Tough Mudder Training: Squats for Strength and Power

One week into my Tough Mudder Training I am starting to feel like, “hey, I can do this.” One exercise I can totally crush as part of my Tough Mudder Training is squats. Tough Mudder Training requires squats for strength and power. Squats (just like those dreaded jumps) come in all shapes and sizes on the training plans: bodyweight squats, goblet squats, squats using an odd object (I will come back to this one), single leg squats, and bodyweight jump squats (oh man, more jumping).

The benefits of squats for Tough Mudder training are numerous and squats (unlike jumps) are one of those exercises that anyone can do and should do (properly and safely of course). Squatting strengthens the overall body as the movement engages your shoulders, abs, and back. The squat is the only movement that trains the “posterior chain”, the collective term for your glutes, hamstrings, adductors, and lower back, and your quadriceps at the same time; an exercise jackpot.

Because doing squats uses so many muscle groups, it recruits a lot of muscle fibers, which in turn builds muscle, burns fat, and improves strengths. Someone who is new to doing squats should start with bodyweight only and practice the proper movement pattern before adding weight: stand with feet shoulder width apart, knees centered over feet, and squat by pushing your hips back keeping your knees out, chest up, head up, eyes ahead, and heels on the floor until you reach a 90-degree angle. With some types of squats, like goblet squats, you go even lower so that your butt almost touches the floor.

Tough Mudder Training: Squatting Using Odd Shaped Objects

The squat I am going to focus on today is this taken from one of the “official training plans”: using an odd object or weight, do 20-30 squats holding the weight close to the body. This is my odd shaped object: Panda, my 27 pound, 4 year old rescue cockapoo mix.

Tough Mudder Training Squats

Panda, come!

Those dumbbell thrusters are still kicking my butt, but on a positive note, I realized last night I was using 8# dumbbells when I thought I was using 5#, so that’s saying something! Happy training and fueling!


  1. This is amazing! Aunt Jenny you are my hero! I absolutely love this and you!!