The greatest gift obstacle racing has given us all, is the rediscovery of the outdoor playground. We grew up outside. We played hard and breathed deeply. But we succumbed to the office, the desk chair, the minivan, the fitness center. We ran on treadmills and allowed asphalt and AstroTurf to cover us up.
But it was in us, deep down inside - a longing to do something real, something gritty - something that would free us from the processed, packaged, placated world we had created. There was something in us that needed to be unleashed, and when it happened it tasted good. For many, that taste came at their first Spartan Race, Tough Mudder, Warrior Dash, or other obstacle or adventure race.
For us, that taste came in the form of an outdoor military-style bootcamp workout group known as F3 - a free, peer-led early morning pain-fest that originated in Charlotte, North Carolina. That group brought us together and into contact with men living that unleashed existence. The cold morning gloom and suffering shocked our systems back into a pulse and awakened us to new realities and new possibilities.
Today, MudGear is built in world-class manufacturing facilities with help from industry legends, but it stemmed from a grassroots need for a better way to get the F3 logo in the hands of a fast growing "Pax". We formed the company and launched the F3 Gear Store to manage operations and fulfillment for the growing F3 regions.
As F3 grew, we kept learning. We had a direct pipeline for feedback from hundreds of guys doing outdoor training and pushing the limits of the gear. We saw how popular gym brands cut corners on fabric and construction, and how these shortcuts were magnified off the treadmill and in the real world. Their marketing was tough, but their product was soft.
We sucked up all the knowledge we could from titans like Hayward "The Horse" Morgan. Hayward has been making apparel since back when we did that in this country, and for some reason he made time for us. Through him and others, we figured out that there were things we could do to make our gear even better for outdoor workouts and even tougher on the race course.
We set out to build a new brand of strongly functional performance gear and offer it to outdoor athletes beyond F3. The Obstacle Course Race (OCR) market was the perfect fit and the perfect place for us to find like-minded miscreants who wanted truly strong gear, made to handle the demands of outdoor training and racing.
Our first custom project was the MudGear Fitted Race Jersey. We went through countless fabrics and several iterations before getting the right fit and feel for a shirt that would move with you on the course and not become saturated with water and mud. The cut was extremely important to us. We wanted it to be close-fitting to stay out of the way of obstacles, but not as restrictive as compression. By fate or luck, we had been connected with the industry's best production partners who gave us lots of patience and access to world-class manufacturing facilities for our runs. We went into production in mid 2012 with several trial runs leading to the first-edition items hitting the course in late 2013.
We continue to build products out of necessity. We needed a trail sock suited for both the longer distances of OCR and adventure racing and demands of mud and full submersion, so we built our own vision of the perfect OCR trail sock, the MudGear 1/4 Crew. We needed a tactical base layer that was tough enough for the outdoors but comfortable enough for the goods, so we created the MudGear Base Layer Boxer Brief.
These and all of our products are built to perform in the elements and not in the gym. MudGear products stand out for their solid construction, functional performance and toughness. We don't care to be among the hundreds of gym brands competing for a spot on the elliptical machine. We serve the outdoor athlete.
We serve the unleashed.