Oak Tough Guy

Frozen lakes, stinking quagmires and electric shocks – not the most relaxing way of spending a Sunday morning, but this is what resident digital designer, Barry Holloway, got up to on February 1st.


The Tough Guy race, established in 1987, is based around the conditions soldiers have had to endure in numerous conflicts over the course of history. The 15km run with over 200 obstacles is designed to test the mind and the body of even the toughest competitor… so how did a sarcastic web designer fair in the battlefields?

“It was hard going. Very hard going. I hate running, so the first 4km was dreadful for me, even though it was relatively flat. Then you get to a section where you have to run up and down the side of a hill about 16 times, which absolutely saps all strength out of your legs.

Cargo nets and log walls all add to the pain – funnily enough the water isn’t the worst bit, it’s getting out of the water caked in emulsion-esque mud and climbing a cargo net in the wind that really cuts to your core… and I don’t get cold that often – just ask Caroline!

There was one section where I was crawling along a ditch under barbed wire – I was at a real low point, but then I thought people died in this situation, men as young as 16, whilst bullets were flying over head, crawling towards uncertainty. It put it all in perspective.”

When asked if he’d be doing it next year, he said “No”.

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