“Heroes are made, not born,” explained outdoor adventurer Bear Grylls as he kickstarted an intense training session for his new obstacle race, the Bear Grylls Survival Race (BGSR).
A crowd of fitness fanatics ready to be put through their paces by Bear Grylls Epic Training expert Natalie Summers, obstacle course expert Freya Martin and a team from the Royal Marines joined BESTFIT. The gruelling 90-minute session took place in the rolling Berkshire hills of Hungerford, perfect terrain for an energetic, sweat-inducing workout.
“It’s time to train effectively, efficiently and with purpose, just the way I commit to do every day,” continued the TV star.“It’s all about core strength, agility, explosive power, balance and a fierce positive mental approach to adversity. All these are key ingredients required to tackle the Bear Grylls Survival Race.
Following Bear’s quick introduction, the group took part in a heartrate raising warm-up, which left us out of breath but wanting more. We were quickly divided into three groups, and assigned our first challenge.
Freya Martin, BGSR Ambassador and one of England’s fastest obstacle course racers, was tasked with helping us master the art of jumping over massive hay bales and to improve our running technique. We’re told to build up speed before attempting the jump, and have to clear two bales before progressing to the cross-country running master class. Freya’s top tip for running up hills? To lift the knees nice and high, and swing the arms.
BESTFIT could have quite easily collapsed on the floor when our group returned to the central meeting point, but no sooner had our pulse started to drop (and we’d grabbed an obligatory red-faced selfie with Bear) we were ordered to the next session, run by a group of Royal Marines.
We spent the next 30 minutes being shouted at – bear crawling, corpse dragging and sprinting. For the grand finale we were split into teams and tasked with carrying various items – including a tractor tyre, weighted pole and sandbag – around the perimeter of the field, as fast as we could.
And just when we thought things couldn’t get any harder, our group was taken to the final part of the training session, a high intensity body weight workout with fitness coach, author and Bear Grylls Epic Training expert Natalie Summers. From across-the-body mountain climbers and press ups, to V walks and crabs, and everything else in between, Natalie delivered a fast-paced workout with little respite. She made us work for 30 seconds, and then rest for 30 seconds, for what seemed like eternity.
When the final whistle went we were left wanting more, even though our bodies thought otherwise. Every muscle in my body was sore – a long hot bath was the final instruction given by Natalie, and one that I gladly followed.
BGSR are a series of mud runs, obstacle races and survival challenges designed to help competitors find their warrior spirit and determination that life is a journey best lived boldly.
“The Bear Grylls Survival Race is not designed to be a one-off event – it is a starting point on a great journey to a stronger, healthier, more determined, and more battle hardened YOU,” says Bear. “If you can complete and conquer one of our events, then you will have earned the right to call yourself a BG Survivor.”
Find out more here: www.beargryllssurvivalrace.com