10.22.2014Personal Tech

What Does a Tough Mudder Race Look Like From the Eye of a GoPro? Awesome.

This is a guest post from Tim Tender (@TT_7), who travels the country working for Weather Central as a trainer/software implementer.

Last year, I wrote a post about the mud run / obstacle course trend that’s been picking up across the country over the last few years. I explored some of the ways you could use technology even when you’re out on the course.

Upping my goals this year, I decided to run Tough Mudder and the Midwest’s own Gladiator Assault Challenge on back-to-back weeks. Tough Mudder was in northeast Wisconsin, immediately followed by the Gladiator Assault Challenge in Lake Geneva, WI.

Tough Mudder was 11.2 miles, while Gladiator Assault Challenge was more than seven. With the help of a Verizon GoPro, I was able to take a souvenir home from both!

The folks at Verizon loaned me a GoPro Hero 3 to take along with me for both events. They even provided a chest mount, called Chesty. Set up of the GoPro with the chest mount was ridiculously easy. All you had to do was unscrew the locking pin, put the camera in place and screw it back on. The chest mount, at first, looked like it would be uncomfortable. It really wasn’t even noticeable during the course.

Operation of the camera was pretty easy, as well. I did take a quick look at the instruction booklet to make sure I was doing everything right, but I didn’t have any problems starting or stopping the recording.

Though it took some time because of the large file sizes, downloading the files to my computer was a piece of cake. It was just a matter of hooking the camera up via USB and copying files over. The large file size is mainly because of the amazing quality of the videos, by the way.

I did run into a couple of things that might make your experience a little better if you plan on using one of these cameras for an event:

  • Make sure to charge it ahead of time. Also, choose whether to keep it running during the entire event. I kept it running, but the battery died about ¾ of the way through Tough Mudder. It survived the Gladiator Assault Challenge.
  • Be careful with really cold water. I think part of the reason the battery died during Tough Mudder was because of the obstacle called "Arctic Enema," where you jump into a pool of ice-cold water. The instructions say that extreme cold or heat may impact battery performance.
  • Watch out to use the correct camera housing. There are two of them. One is waterproof and the other isn’t. A quick scan of the instructions will let you know the difference between the two.
  • Use the free editing software provided by GoPro on its website. You’ll upload your videos, set your in and out points, convert them then assemble them into an edited movie.

Overall, the GoPro is a cool little gadget and a great way to create your own souvenirs from events. While it’s useful for events like mud runs, I have also taken it mountain biking and into the ocean.

Check out the videos below to see the GoPro in action!


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