Anthony’s support system in Chicago is pretty muckin’ amazing. His crew gets together every year at MuckFest® MS to conquer the obstacles and raise awareness about MS.

Interested in learning more about the FUN mud run that’s raising funds for the National MS Society? Click the button below and be prepared to get muddy.

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Guest post written by Boston Mucker Heather O.

Up until last February, I had no idea what MuckFest® MS was. Prior to being diagnosed img_9041-e1518729856515.jpgwith Multiple Sclerosis in November, my life consisted of training for obstacle course races such as Spartan and Mudderella. All were for fun and were to challenge myself, but none of them were for a real purpose other than personal satisfaction. How could I not have known MuckFest MS existed?

Last year was a trying year for me and my family. I suffered from six separate relapses which had me pretty immobile for the entire year. Depression was setting in. Thoughts of “why me?” overcame my brain. One afternoon my sister happened to call me with news that she hoped would cheer me up. She told me that her husband works with a woman close in age to myself (early thirties) who also has MS. This woman was signing up for a mud race to fundraise for the National MS Society. I was so excited to be part of something that not only helped others suffering from MS, but also involved what I loved most…obstacle course racing!

Three weeks before the event, I happened to have another relapse that left my entire right side numb for two consecutive weeks. Such is my luck, huh? Two days before the race I completed the last day of my five-day Solumedrol treatment. I was told by my loved ones that just showing up was enough. It wasn’t enough for me. I needed to fight this disease. There was no way I was going to let it win. The day of the race, I put my team shirt on and jogged (okay, I limped) alongside 14 of my family members and friends.

“I needed to fight this disease. There was no way I was going to let it win.”

Did I have to skip some obstacles? Sure. Did I feel like I was missing out on some of the fun? At times. Did I show up and give it everything I had? Absolutely! Looking around the day of the race, there were very few people with MS bandannas on. I felt lucky to be able to participate that day not only for me, but for everyone else who couldn’t. This was the greatest experience and one that I will continue to be a part of for as long as possible. If you’re thinking of signing up, don’t think twice. Do it, you won’t regret it. You have MS, MS doesn’t have YOU!

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Heather

A Q&A ROADTRIP TO CHICAGO

Laura R., a St. Louis-turned-Chicago Mucker, first mucked in 2014 with family and friends. In 2015 she had the largest team in St. Louis, and we’re thrilled to have her road-tripping to Chicago in 2018! Thanks for sharing why YOU muck, Laura!

Why do you Muck?Laura 4

I muck for myself and my friend Melanie. We were both diagnosed within a few months of each other. We are neighbors and our youngest kids are friends. We became inseparable and each other’s support system. We both like to read, walk and volunteer at the MS Center of St. Louis.

Tell us about your team: Are they friends, coworkers, family members, a mix? How did you get them all together?

The Dirty Birds of St. Louis are friends and family. 2014 was our first year and we had 8 members. The following year our team grew to 44 members making us the largest team in St. Louis! I asked everyone to recruit 2 people and they really came through. In 2016, we had a MuckFest® MS road trip to Chicago.  We understandably had fewer members. We raised a lot of money and had fun even though it was absolutely freezing! We took a year off but 2018 is going to be the best one yet.

Laura's Team

If you had to give someone ONE tip about fundraising, what would it be?

Facebook is a great fundraising tool. Many people have been affected by MS and want to donate. I always make sure to thank and tag the donor on Facebook so their friends can see and spread the generous donations.

Some people are worried that MuckFest MS would be too difficult… what would you say to them?

Some of our team members are scared of heights or small spaces. They just go around that obstacle and wait for the team to complete the obstacle and join back in. I’m not the best runner so I do what I can and walk the rest. MuckFest MS is not a “race” so there is no pressure to be fast. Just enjoy, take your time and take advantage of the great photographers.

Does Laura’s story pique your interest and ignite your desire to get MUDDY? Learn more about the FUN mud run by clicking “Register Now” below.

MFMS_2018_Web_RegisterButton_576pxLaura Team

We’re SO excited to introduce a new FAQ tool on Facebook Messenger! Have questions about MuckFest® MS? Ask our NEW Puck the Muck Duck robot, the newest resource to the MuckFest MS family.

Puck will get smarter with time, so please be patient as he hatches from his egg. As always, feel free to contact us at info@muckfestms.com with any questions that arise.

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WINNERS for #WeekofMud

CONGRATS to all of the winners below, and THANK YOU to everyone who played along this week! Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to stay up-to-date with the latest mucktackular news.

If your name is listed below, please email your full name, mailing address, t-shirt size, and which day you won to info@muckfestms.com. 

Monday, Rubber Duckies

  1. Shannon W. (Tagged friends: Steve & Christina)
  2. Rachael M. (Tagged friend: Elena)
  3. Marian W.M. (Tagged friend: Shari)

Tuesday, MuckFest MS Baseball Cap

  1. Boston: Suzanne L.
  2. Philadelphia: Dave G.
  3. New Jersey: Jamie C.
  4. Detroit: Carrie S.
  5. Chicago: Stephanie M.
  6. Dallas: Tami K.

 Wednesday, MuckFest MS Hoodie

  1. Sheila T., Dirty Dudes and Divas
  2. Brittany S., Bad Mother Muckers
  3. Heather O., Mucking Off
  4. Jacenta M., Grandma’s Angels
  5. Patsy S.P., Root Down

Thursday, Puck the Muck Duck T-shirt

  1. Katelyn G., Philadelphia
  2. Kerri H., Boston
  3. Jeffrey C., New Jersery
  4. Stephanie R., New Jersey
  5. Hali M., Pennsylvania

Friday, Free Registration (2 winners)

  1. Audrey S. and her mom, Robyn

 

We’re thrilled to kick-off our #WeekofMud giveaway today!

Each day this week, Muckers will have the chance to win FUN prizes, ranging from merchandise to free registrations. Just follow the instructions on our Facebook posts and YOU could be a lucky winner!

Game on, Muckers!

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When it comes to mud runs, don’t settle for railroad ties and a bunch of tires. Look for mud runs with big, awesome obstacles like the ones below. They’ll test your athleticism and your sense of humor.

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  1. Just sit yo’self down and slide, my slippery friend. You’ll achieve maximum velocity as you go feet-first into the drink, making a splashy entrance.
  1. What goes up must come down. There are no recess monitors out on the course telling you not to jump off the swings. Jump and make a show of it.
Swing Set

Obstacle: Swing Set, MuckFest MS

  1. Everyone loves a zip line. This one zips you on a slight incline and stops short, launching you forward into a graceful or not-so-graceful water entry.
  1. They’re big. There are 9 of them. And they’re swinging from a crane and may bump you into the mud. You’ve been warned.
Big Balls

Obstacle: Big Balls, MuckFest MS

  1. Before you jump, remind everyone, “Yeah, I do my own stunts!”
Crash Landing

Obstacle: Crash Landing, MuckFest MS

Take a spin through the MuckFest® MS course and see all the big and bodacious obstacles.

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MuckFest MS is the FUN mud run with the best obstacles. Fired-up and fun-loving teams of friends, family and co-workers run on a well-designed 5K course, featuring super-sized obstacles and mud from start to finish. No special training or equipment is required. This event is built for laughs, but we’re also on a serious mission toward a world free of multiple sclerosis (MS). 100% of fundraising dollars go to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

After getting dirty on the course, participants shower off and meet up with guests to celebrate in the MuckFestival area. It’s a party with beer, soda, food, games, and a mucky toast or two. There’s even a muddy, pint-sized play lot called Lil’ Muckers that’s just for kids.

OK, so maybe these aren’t commandments, more like firm guidelines. But whatever you call them, they will help you have a righteous good time at your next mud run. Are you preparing for your first mud run? Even better!

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  1. Remember the Mud Run Day & keep it dirty. The dirtier the better is our motto.
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  2. Thou shalt not steal thy neighbor’s thunder. Let your fellow mud runner do his or her thang and sit tight, you’ll get your turn.
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  3. Honor thy mucker. As you slip and slide through the course, stop and pay homage to your teammate and fellow mucker. A salute will do, but a well-placed mud splat is most honorable.
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  4. Thou shalt not covet your neighbor’s oversized banana costume. Sure, we all want one, but we can’t all have one, so be cool and be happy with your leopard print loincloth.
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  5. You shall practice your beer hoisting ahead of time. The most neglected part of mud run prep in our not-so-humble opinion.
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If you seek more guidance on how to be the best mud runner you can be, check out MuckFestMS.com and find the answers you’ve been looking for, my mud-curious friend.

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MuckFest® MS is the FUN mud run with the best obstacles. Fired-up and fun-loving teams of friends, family and coworkers run on a well-designed 5K course, featuring super-sized obstacles and mud from start to finish. No special training or equipment is required. This event is built for laughs, but we’re also on a serious mission toward a world free of multiple sclerosis (MS). 100% of fundraising dollars go to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

After getting dirty on the course, participants shower off and meet up with guests to celebrate in the MuckFestival area. It’s a party with beer, soda, food, games, and a mucky toast or two. There’s even a muddy, pint-sized play lot called Lil’ Muckers that’s just for kids.

Not sure what to wear?

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Register for MuckFest MS by 12/31 and receive a FREE MuckFest MS drawstring backpack! Here are four useful (and fun) ways you could use your backpack:

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Guest Post Written by Marie Moriarty-Puggi, a Philadelphia Mucker

How do you conquer all of those crazy, mucky obstacles while living with MS? It’s easy!

Ok, “easy” might be a bit of an exaggeration. However, it CAN be done, and I can prove it to you.

To start off, feel free to train, but truth be told I hate walking and I don’t train for this event. I was diagnosed with MS on February 6, 2010. It was a nightmare that was hard for me to come to terms with for close to two years. The first MS event I completed (yep, I didn’t train for this one either) was the MS Cape Cod 50-mile challenge. Let me tell you… I was no lightweight back in 2011, weighing in over 200 pounds. I cleared 45 miles and then blew my left ankle and calf out in the last haul, but still completed this insanity of a walk.

Since I hate walking (I believe I mentioned this), the following year, I started up my team for MuckFest MS—the Mucker Puckers. I did this event with my partner, sister, brother-in-law, and my cousin. I walked it and skipped maybe five obstacles. I thought I was going to die and then I said (first secretively in my head), “I have MS but there is no way in hell I’m dying in the mud! I might have MS, but MS does not have ME!”

If you’d like to conquer this hysterical obstacle course, here are my words of encouragement and advice: ATTITUDE IS EVERYTHING! I am heading into my 6th year of doing MuckFest MS and am now almost 40 pounds lighter.  Here are some pointers for a fun and successful day:

  1. Get a good pair of sneakers and be prepared to get dirty, real dirty.
  2. Pace yourself, because with MS it can get tiring quickly if you don’t conserve your energy. I save my energy for the obstacles I enjoy and the ones that I struggle with I skip; no shame in that game.
  3. Laugh at yourself, but even more, with your teammates. You will have a different sense of energy. It’s like floating on a cloud and it’s the few hours a year that I don’t feel like I have MS physically and emotionally. Humor will get you far on the day of the mud run.
  4. Stay hydrated, especially if you’re in a later wave when it’s warm out.
  5. Take your time. That golden bell will be waiting at the finish line for you to ring as many times as you want, because you earned as many rings as you want.

You will be exhausted at the end, but it’s so worth it when you’re told: YOU ARE A ROCK STAR! YOU DID IT! BE PROUD OF THIS ACCOMPLISHMENT!

MS can be paralyzing for many in different ways, but know that the recuperating you may need after MuckFest MS is worth it because—YOU DID IT! You’ve revealed your true secret to your family and friends: that you are a real-life-superhero.

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