#MudZone Worthy Moments from 2016

It’s official! MuckFest® MS 2016 has come to a close. We had an epic year with all of our Muckers, volunteers, and supporters and we can’t wait to get muddy with you all again in 2017! Until then, here’s a photo recap of some of our favorite #MudZone moments from each MuckFest MS event in 2016.

Boston:

Check out these awesome muddy moves from May 14th and 15th from our first event of 2016 in New England!

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Philadelphia:

The second stop of the year took us right outside Philadelphia on June 4th and 5th for two days in the mud at a brand new site!

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New Jersey:

We took off to the Garden State on June 25th and 26th for our last two-day event. New Jersey was even crowned the best mud in America!

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Denver:

On July 16th we went across the country to muck it up in the mountains with our Colorado Muckers!

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Detroit:

The muck took us to Detroit on August 6th for a beautiful sunny day filled with laughs.

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Twin Cities:

You could find us in the Twin Cities area on August 20th! We had rain, but that just made for a super soaked, delightfully muddy course.

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Chicago:

The windy city offered us one of the biggest MuckFest MS teams EVER on September 10th and man did they bring the excitement to the #MudZone!

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San Francisco:

Bay Area Muckers are pro-mud no matter what! We hit our first stop in California on October 1st for fun in the sun.

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Houston:

Howdy! We made our way to Texas on October 15th and we had so much fun getting mucky with y’all.

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Dallas:

We brought the muck to Dallas on October 29th for the very first time and these Muckers showed us that everything is truly bigger in Texas, especially the piles of muck!

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So Cal:

The very last stop of 2016 brought us back to California on November 12th and our So Cal Muckers closed out the season with a bang and LOTS of laughs!

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Thank you to every single person that helped make every MuckFest MS a success this year! Without all of you, we’d surely have less mud, laughs, and memories to keep us muckin’ into 2017. We hope to see all of you in 2017 so we can capture even more #MudZone moments like these!

 

MS Will Knot Defeat Us

Thousands of participants, spectators, and volunteers across the country visited the AbbVie tent at MuckFest® MS where they contributed to the MS Will Not Defeat Us Shoelace wall. This wall is an inspirational display of support, overcoming obstacles, and of our Muckers’ passion to end MS forever.

The bright shoelaces shared stories of people mucking for mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, aunts, uncles, friends, neighbors, and for themselves. Some shoelaces mentioned specific names, others that we “Muck for a cure”, and some simply and powerfully say a single word: “ME”.

Each inscribed shoelace was added to a display emblazoned with that city’s name. The walls traveled from event to event, and the symbolic light of the bright shoelaces grew brighter and brighter as we grew from one event to two…four…seven…and ultimately ELEVEN events, ELEVEN panels strong.

We hope you were able to join us in 2016 and add your story to a shoelace. It is a powerful reminder that when we are united and tied together, MS Will Knot Defeat Us.

 

 

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, we wanted to show our Muckers how we incorporate muck into our menu of turkey and green bean casserole. You might be thinking right about now, “Muck for dinner? We’ll pass!”, but all true Muckers know that Puck the Muck Duck is a bona fide chef and can make just about any recipe a little muckier. So, wow your family and friends with our top choices from his arsenal of mucky holiday recipes!

Puck the Muck Duck Ice Cream Sandwiches

Nothing screams MuckFest® MS quite like a plate of Puck the Muck Duck shaped desserts on the dinner table! Our absolute favorite duck dessert comes in the form of ice cream sandwiches. They are the perfect way to satisfy your post-dinner sweet tooth without creating extra mess in the kitchen thanks to being plate free. 

Recipe & Photo Credit: Chicago Pastry Chef Aaron Manuyag

Creamy Muck & Cheese

The best way to the heart is through the stomach and you can bet you’ll be feeling the love when you arrive with a big dish of ooey gooey mac & cheese! Or as Puck the Muck Duck likes to call it… Muck & Cheese! Follow this recipe to make a crowd-pleasing Thanksgiving dish that doubles as a nod to MuckFest MS!

Recipe & Photo Credit: Spend with Pennies 

Chocolate Mudslide Cake

Anyone who’s ever taken on Triple Pits knows that it’s a certified mudslide! That’s why a chocolatey mudslide cake is the perfect ode to one of our muddiest obstacles. This will be a hit for any chocolate lovers at your dinner table and they may even come back for seconds. Or like a true Triple Pits lover, thirds! 

Recipe & Photo Credit: Beyond Frosting 

Big Ball Cheese Ball

This recipe will take you just a couple minutes to complete and will surely be a hit for anyone who enjoys cheese as much as Puck does! We recommend doubling this recipe to truly serve a muck-approved Big Ball. Or even better, make nine cheese balls in honor of our swinging obstacle Big Balls! 

Recipe & Photo Credit: Yummy Healthy Easy

MUCKFEST MS So Cal PHOTOS

Check out this SNEAK PEEK of photos from MuckFest® MS So Cal on November 12!

Don’t see a shot of you in your ‪#‎MudZone? A link to all participant photos will be shared later this week.

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While we believe the anyone can have fun at MuckFest® MS with no training required, it’s always a good idea to stretch your legs and buff up your mud throwing hand to make sure none of your teammates outrun you when you try to cover them in mud! That’s why our friends over at Crunch Gym Cerritos have put together some simple and easy training tips to make sure your body is ready for a day of laughs, spills, and thrills.

Fitness Manger, Broderick, suggests tackling training in three phases…

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Phases:

Phase 1- Focus on Improving Conditioning Movements & Motivation 

Phase 2- Focus on Building Stamina & Work Capacity 

Phase 3- Focus on Maximizing Work Potential – “Pushing Past Your Comfort Zone” 

Application:

Phase 1- Learn to love lunges and squats! These body weight exercises create the most agility.

Phase 2- Learn to increase your stamina by completing more reps/rounds per workout routine. This will help you last longer as you make your way through the obstacles. 

Phase 3- Work on reaching a “best record” by focusing on doing one of the below workouts for a best total amount of rounds completed in the allotted time. This will help you understand how to get comfortable pushing yourself.   

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Workouts:

At Home Body Weight Circuit: 15 min

  • 5- Squat Thrusters
  • 5- Reverse Lunges with Knee-upper leg
  • 5- 180-degree jump squats
  • 5- Mountain Climbers per leg
  • 5- Push up position with knee tucks (to modify hold the push-up position for 45 sec)

Battle Rope Circuit: 15 min

  • 12- Double Waves
  • 12- Power Slams
  • 12- Lateral Shuffles with Alternating Waves (single arm movement)
  • 2- sled pushes

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Tips for the day before the event:

Nutrition: The day/night before the race focus on consuming more carbs than normal. This is known as carbloading before an event. Carbs will help keep your muscles fueled with glycogen. Your body utilizes glycogen as energy to fuel your muscle movements. A good source of carbs are sweet potatoes, brown rice, and pastas. 

Sleep: Get a good night’s rest before the event. Recommended is 7-8 hours. 

Hydration: I would recommend drinking a sum of 1.5 gallons the day before the race to begin the hydration process. You will perspire more than that during the race in the form of sweat. Dehydration causes muscle cramps and body fatigue. 

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Tips for the day of the event:

Nutrition: Depending on your race time, you do not want to consume a high amount of food 1-2 hours prior to the event. Breakfast should consist of proteins and minimum fats. Breakfast should have about 2 servings of fruits, preferably 2 servings of banana for potassium. 

Hydration: We recommend you consume around 12 oz. of a sports drink before the run. Sports drinks are fueled with electrolytes and dextrose sugar. Both of these components can be utilized for energy and also prevent muscle cramps. 

Stretch: You should spend at least 30 minutes static stretching before you take off. This will help get your muscles limber and flexible for the long course ahead. 

About Crunch Gym:

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Crunch offers a diverse, inclusive culture for all types of people and all levels of fitness. They strive to encourage, empower, and entertain. They pride themselves on fusing fitness with fun and have a no judgment philosophy that welcomes all types of people to try out their approximately 20,000 square foot state of the art gym that offers personal fitness, group classes, and many other amenities. They have also been recognized as a leader in the fitness industry for over 25 years.

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We had the chance to talk to one of our many military Muckers who participate in MuckFest® MS. Tracey “Tra” Cooper-Harris will be joining us at MuckFest MS So Cal on November 12 for her third time in the mud! Tra lives with MS and mucks it for herself, her mother who had MS, and her dear friend’s dad who was also affected by MS. She knows first-hand how MS touches so many people’s lives throughout the world and comes out to support the MS community and get closer to a cure.

She also served in the Army for many years and knows many veterans, military members, and military families that have also been touched by MS or know those who live with the disease. She uses MuckFest MS as a platform to support others in these communities! And her love for playing in the mud runs deep. She recently thought about getting a Puck the Muck Duck tattoo in honor of the event, finding a cure for MS, and because her wife has a slight obsession with ducks!

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MuckFest MS: Hi, Tra! We’re so excited to have you join us again in Southern California for MuckFest MS! Are you excited?!

Tra: I am! I love doing MuckFest MS, even when I’m there solo. This year, it’s even more exciting because it’s right on the heels of Veteran’s Day and Marine Corps Day which are important days for me.

MuckFest MS: That’s awesome!           

Tra: Yeah, being a military Mucker and interacting with military communities and their families for work has made MuckFest MS a sort of dedication to both the MS community and the military community; both of which I’m a part of and that play a huge role in my life.

MuckFest MS: So, what motivated you to sign up for MuckFest MS initially?

Tra: It looked like fun! Plus, with all my buddies posting that they were doing all these obstacles course events, I thought maybe I should give it a try. Then, I thought if I have this disease (MS), I need to be doing something to make a difference as long as I can as I’m still mobile.

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MuckFest MS: So, you’re living with MS?

Tra: Yes, I was diagnosed in 2010.

MuckFest MS: Is MuckFest MS your first event hosted by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society or have you participated in our MS events?

Tra: I’ve done patient-centric dinners, a thank-you luncheon for top donors (by participating in MuckFest MS in 2014), and volunteered when I was in the Army at the NMSS in Portland, ME circa the 1990s.

MuckFest MS: Is there someone specific you muck for beside yourself?

Tra: I muck for my mom and my best friend’s father-in-law, both of whom fought MS and have passed from the disease. I also muck for my fellow military and veterans who have MS.

MuckFest MS: That’s incredible! Looking toward this year’s event, what was your absolute favorite memory from 2014 or 2015?

Tra: Kicking off the first wave by taking a HUGE splat in the mud right before we headed out on the course! Also, hanging out with the fabulous guys from team Men at Twerk. We kept encouraging each other throughout all the obstacles and the whole event. We had a blast and they told me I could join them in 2016 if I didn’t have a team of my own this year!

MuckFest MS: Describe MuckFest MS in three words.

Tra: Dirty, Muddy, FUN!

MuckFest MS: Which obstacles are you most excited to take on again?

Tra: I really like the AbbVie Spinner because you get to swing and land in water!

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MuckFest MS: What would you say to someone who has never done MuckFest MS before?

Tra: You don’t have to be a Spartan or a Tough Mudder to do this event! I tried it because another friend did the event in St. Louis, MO back in 2014, and she said that if she could do it, I could do it. There’s enough obstacles and muckiness to be a challenge, but nothing crazy like fire or electricity. And you’re helping folks with MS like me looking for an actual cure to this disease.  

MuckFest MS: Anything else you want to add?

Tra: Doing this event shows what you CAN do and it’s for a great cause! Plus, you get nice Puck the Duck swag and a free beer. Can’t beat that!  

Are you a Mucker in the military? We recently partnered with the site GovX to provide discount registrations to military participants. We would love to have you out at MuckFest MS in 2017 to support military communities who are also affected by MS. Sign up for GovX today!

Puck’s Place to Play: So Cal

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MuckFest® MS So Cal is next weekend, so we had Puck put together a list of his favorite places to play when he’s not rolling around in the mud in Los Angeles for MuckFest MS!

Let yourself be a tourist for the day and check out one of the coolest landmarks in So Cal.

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Need a fun way to train before MuckFest MS So Cal? Then strap on your hiking boots and take an adventure to the Hollywood Sign. There’s no better way to see this iconic sign than up close and personal, in Puck’s opinion! Pick from three different hiking paths starting at easy and going to difficult. If you decide to take the challenge of the steepest path, look out for Puck flying above and cheering you on!

 

Enjoy a hot meal after a long day in the mud at Puck’s favorite burger place!

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If one thing is certain, it’s that Puck the Muck Duck loves eating delicious food. And like most westerners, Puck loves anything animal style from In-N-Out Burger! So, after you work up an appetite playing on obstacles and tossing mud at your teammates, head over to this burger joint for a much-needed reward. Just don’t forget to pick up a double-double for Puck!

 

Ever want to walk in the shoes of a movie star? Check out this famous local spot.

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The Hollywood Walk of Fame is sure to be fun for everyone. This popular tourist spot will get you walking over a mile to see the names of famous actors, directors, musicians, and more. It’s one of Puck’s favorite stops after MuckFest MS, but we think that’s because he’s still looking for the star with his name on it!

 

Make sure you don’t touch anything with your muddy hands at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

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This museum is home to over 100,000 artifacts dating back from ancient times and dating up to this century. If you choose to stop by, you can find Puck making his way through the museum’s most notable installation called Urban Light. These 202 cast iron street lamps illuminate the area outside the museum and attract visitors from all over the world.

 

Check out this thrilling view of LA that may be even better than the top of Crash Landing.

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OUE Skyspace LA Skyslide is an incredible way to see the city from the 70th But there’s a catch! The VERY best view the building offers is a glass slide that will let you zoom down to the 60th floor all while getting a new look at Los Angeles. This way you can truly see things from Puck’s perspective!

 

 

A SURPRISE IS COMING…

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It’s a good day to CHEER! The MuckFest MS 2017 schedule will be revealed tomorrow!

MUCKFEST MS DALLAS PHOTOS

Check out this SNEAK PEEK of photos from MuckFest® MS Dallas on October 29!

Don’t see a shot of you in your ‪#‎MudZone? A link to all participant photos will be shared later this week.

 

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THANK YOU to our MuckFest MS Muckers, Volunteers, and Donors for helping us reach the incredible milestone of $25 Million fundraised for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Together, we will end MS forever!

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