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Teachers compete in Tough Mudder event

Josh Cooper competed in the Tough Mudder event.

Josh Cooper competed in the Tough Mudder event.

By Judy Reed

N-Tough-Mudder2Two Cedar Springs High School teachers gave it all they had and then some when they competed in the grueling Tough Mudder event held at Michigan International Speedway June 28 and 29.
Josh Cooper and Brian Busen competed on separate days in the 12-mile obstacle course designed by British Special Forces to test all around strength, stamina, mental grit, and camaraderie.
“The last couple of miles were tough,” noted Cooper. “Afterward I looked like a bruised mess.”
Cooper said that he tries to do one or two events a year to stay in shape. Last year he did the Grand Rapids Triathlon, and he and Busen did the Warrior Dash in Millenium Park, which is a shortened version (a 3.1 mile course) of the Tough Mudder event. He had fun, and so decided to step it up this year to try the bigger event. He signed up to run on Saturday as part of a four-person team with some friends from college, and Busen signed up to run on Sunday.
N-Tough-Mudder3To train, Cooper began running in March and working out at the gym. He felt good about his training, but when he got to the course, it was not what he expected. “It had rained excessively leading up to the event. The whole course was covered in mud, it was just a mess. I had been running on the trail, on asphalt. And sure, it’s called Tough Mudder, but there’s supposed to be mud on the obstacles, not on the course,” he said with a laugh.
There were 20 obstacles scattered throughout the 12-mile course. Cooper said the obstacles were fun, though some, like the electric shock, were definitely challenging. On the electric eel, there were wires hanging down that would shock the participant as they crawled through the mud. In some of the tubes they crawled through, they were filled with water and there wasn’t a lot of room to breathe. On the Walk the Plank, they climbed a 15-foot tower and jumped in a mud pit. “They were all a lot fun,” he said.
Many of the participants at this year’s Michigan Tough Mudder event came down sick with the NoroVirus, but Cooper wasn’t one of them.
The Tough Mudder events are held all over the world, and they have raised over $5 million for the Wounded Warrior Project. Last year, 460,000 people participated in 35 events. This year there are 53 events scheduled.
Cooper said that he would certainly do it again, and recommends that if anyone is going to do it, that they get a team to sign up together and train together. “I had a blast. Barring injury, I’ll do it multiple times. It’s quite the adrenaline rush and a lot of fun.”
For more info on the event, visit www.toughmudder.com.

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Red Hawk football player signs with GVSU

Andrew signs his letter of intent at Celebration Cinema with 39 other West Michigan college bound athletes. From Left: Rebecca Klompstra, Andrew Klompstra, and Chuck Klompstra.

Cedar Springs senior Andrew Klompstra has signed his letter of intent to play football at Grand Valley State University. He is the third Cedar Springs football player to receive a scholarship to play college football in the past 4 years and the first at GVSU.  Andrew was selected All-Conference and All-area this past football season as well as Academic All-State HM.
Coach Brian Busen says that he will miss Andrew, and his leadership and work ethic that he grew into over his high school career.
“I am very proud of Andrew. He has worked hard and is very deserving of this great opportunity. I look forward to see the growth and improvement in college for Andrew.  Andrew is not only a great football player but he is also a great student and I think GVSU is a perfect fit for Andrew both academically and athletically,” said Busen.

CS senior Andrew Klompstra and Coach Busen.

“I wish Andrew and GVSU great success, with the exception of the Ferris State game!”

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