The day before the 43rd Super Bowl, the 24th annual Tough Guy Competition took place on an old horse farm just outside Birmingham, UK. On the last day of January, 3,000 contestants raced through 21 treacherous obstacles on a course eight "country miles" in length. The course is full of many tunnels, steep descents, barbed wire crawls, muddy swims, and of course trekking through fire.
The race is a fundraising event for the Mr. Mouse Farm for Unfortunates, which is home to hundreds of retired horses and provides job opportunities for young offenders. The race took place two days before snow storms crippled London, so the temperature was cold; over 600 contestants were treated for hypothermia. While the broken/dislocated bone count is only in the dozens, one contestant did break his neck, but there were no fatalities. James Appleton, a 28-year-old Cambridge student, won the race billed as "the safest most dangerous taste of physical and mental endurance pain in the world."
Interested in proving your mettle? You can compete in the Nettle Warrior event slated for July 26, or the next Tough Guy race in 2010. If you sign up early, the entrance fee is only 80 pounds. Personally, I would start training now. Be sure to check out the gallery of obstacles.