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tough-mudder-letterIn the end, it was a stupid mistake which snowballed into the ending it did for me at this London Tough Mudder.

I accidentally took too much sweating medication in the blackness of the night. That medication dried me out so badly that no amount of water could quench my thirst during the race. Consuming too much water in an attempt to quench that thirst depleted my body of salt which caused muscle cramps in my legs, made worse by the coldness of everything. I drank more water (so much more water) during the 12-mile course to try and help my cramps. My cramps got worse because water wasn’t the problem, salt deficiency was, and I was only making it worse by depleting my body of salt even further. The massive amounts of water in my system then chilled my body from the inside out each time I submerged into the icy cold waters of the different obstacles, causing hypothermia. The pain of the cramps was excruciating. Shock from that hypothermia as I got uncontrollably colder set in. And that is how I ended up in the situation I was in. Simple science.

It wasn’t lack of training. It wasn’t lack of physical ability. It wasn’t an inability to finish Tough Mudder with my brother the way I had intended. It was one stupid mistake and then a plethora of well-intentioned mistakes to follow which did me in. But, I didn’t really understand that until much later when a team of doctors laid it out for me.

What I do know is that, as I mentioned in the last blog post, I left the race feeling defeated. I had finished the Tough Mudder, sure. But it did not go as planned, at all. I didn’t get my glorious finish alongside my brother. For all intents and purposes, I had paid a crud-load of money to fly across an ocean and get my ass handed to me. I didn’t want to talk about it. I didn’t want to remember it. I didn’t want to admit it to anyone or blog about it. I just wanted to get back to my brother’s home, FaceTime with my girlfriend, and try and find some sort of comfort in my defeat.

But, see, she wasn’t having it, and wow did I try to rally her to my defeated cause.

“Dan, you finished the race,” she kept saying every time I told her why it was one giant disaster.

“Yes, but I held my brother back…”

“Dan, you finished the race.”

“Yes, but his wife was there with their newborn baby and I kept them waiting in the cold for hours…”

“Dan, you finished the race.”

“Yes, but his in-laws had plans that night and they got stuck watching their son while I…”

“Dan, you finished the race.”

“Yes, but how am I supposed to face these three Tough Mudder groups I’ve already rallied for next year and…”

“Dan, you finished the race. That’s all they want to know. In fact, they need to know that.”

“Yes, but… but… but…”

God. I don’t know why, but I wanted her to tell me that I had blown it. I wanted her to admit that I got my ass kicked. I wanted her to tell me that all of my feelings of discouragement were valid. That’s all. And when she got tired of all my reasons why I sucked, she stopped me from talking and said this…

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Dan Pearce is an American-born author, app developer, photographer, and artist. This blog, Single Dad Laughing, is what he's most known for, with more than 1.4 million daily subscribers as of 2017. Pearce writes mostly humorous and introspective works, as well as his musings which span from fatherhood, to dating, to life, to the people and dynamics of society. Single Dad Laughing is much more than a blog. It's an incredible community of people just being real and awesome together!