The Best Endurance Events of 2020 [UPDATED]

22nd February 2019

With 2020 now in full swing, what better to look forward to than a tough and gruelling test of strength and endurance (yes, we’re being serious).

Here in Great Britain, there are lots of different endurance events running all year round offering challenges for beginners right through to seasoned experts.

Long distance walks, hiking, trail and ultra runs are some of the many endurance activities which are thankfully available to us right on our doorstep in the UK – the very things that dreams are made of with all you gluttons for punishment!

Here is a rundown of our top pick for 2020’s events, ranging from beginner level right through to expert – dare you compete in one?

Tough Mudder:

Probably one of the most well-known endurance events, Tough Mudder have been laying the gauntlet for new and repeat challengers since 2010 and now runs in nearly 50 countries with over 3 million participants!

Ranging from 3 to 10mile obstacle courses and held in both urban and rural areas (dependant on how much mud and water you want to wade through), you will surely be able to find a challenge suited to your ability.

The obstacles are ever changing, but one constant is the teamwork and dedication that ‘mudders’ face every year. Expect electroshock therapy, muddy miles and some tight squeezes!

Are you tough enough?

Date: Various

Locations: Various in the UK

Difficulty level: Intermediate – Expert (check out their training guides).

Pilgrim Challenge:

Are you ready for your pilgrimage?

Now in it’s 11th year, the Pilgrim Challenge is a two-day 66-mile ultra-marathon for trail runners, joggers and walkers alike! The feat takes you on a very impressive tour of the North Downs Way following in the footsteps of the Pilgrims on their travels to Canterbury.

This event is not only a race, but is also steeped in history and beautiful scenery. Everything you could possibly need for the two-day competition is taken care of – accommodation, showers, breakfast, checkpoint refreshments, parking and there is even the chance to catch some inspiring guest speakers at night.

There are also options just to complete either day 1 or 2 of the event if you would prefer.

Date: Saturday 1st & Sunday 2nd February

Location: Surrey

Difficulty level: Intermediate – Expert

The Mighty Deerstalker:

The cult running event deep in the Scottish Borders is back for 2020! The gruelling course sends you on an exciting exploration run… in the dark!

Don’t let that last bit put you off! If running with a headlamp isn’t for you there are also daytime races that you can take part in, and there is also an option to complete a double stalker for those who like more of a challenge. Expect to be crossing rivers, exploring forests and climbing a mountain or two.

The professionally managed event covers all bases with on-site camping, fully waymarked routes, gourmet food and bar experience plus a roof-raising afterparty for finishers alongside much more!

Date: 14th March

Location: Innerleithen

Difficulty level: Intermediate – Expert

Endurancelife Exmoore:

Race across the extreme terrain of England’s best kept secret, Exmoor National Park. The trail runners dream encompasses many of the areas stiff climbs and long descents. Expect stunning open moorland, historical ruins and beautiful flowing rivers. They claim that no course in the UK offers a more varied terrain in such a concentrated area.

There are different distances to choose from, dependant on your ability level – 10K, half marathon, marathon and ultra. But one thing is for sure, you will not have another trail running experience like this. Are you ready for the challenge?

Date: 4th April

Location: Martinhoe, Exmoor

Difficulty level: Intermediate – Expert

National Three Peak Challenge:

This challenge does exactly what is says on the tin, climb three peaks. Sounds simple right? Well, what if we told you these were the three highest peaks in Scotland, England and Wales scaled in 24 hours! This challenge is a real test of endurance and strength but many have lived to tell the tale.

Meeting at Fort William, you will be expected to complete Ben Nevis in around five hours before setting off to Scafell Pike. You should complete this in around four hours before heading to your final task of the day, Snowdonia. Finishing this in around five hours before getting the train home, certificate in hand. Sounds easy, right?

Mountain Leaders will be there to guide you the whole way and transportation between all mountains is pre-organised.

The challenge can also be completed in three days if you are not feeling up to the gruelling 24 hours.

Dates: (24hrs) 23rd May – 26th September (three day) 11th July – 12th September

Location: Begin at Fort William, ending with transfers to Chester.

Difficulty: Intermediate – Expert

MONTANE Spine Endurance Events:

MONTANE and Spine come together to bring you some of the toughest endurance challenges in the world. There are four gruelling events to choose from in the 2020 roster, let’s check them out.

Challenger

A non-stop 108 mile race between Edale and Hardraw and you have a time limit of 60 hours to complete this challenging section of the Pennine Way.

Race

A 7-day, 268 mile, non-stop race from Edale to Kirk Yetholm. You will certainly need your wits about you in this one testing your physical resilience and mental fortitude.

Flare

The summer version of the Challenger, another non-stop 60 hour race from Edale to Kirk Hardraw.

Fusion

A summer rendition of the Race, again a 268 mile gruelling task requiring both physical and mental endurance.

Please follow the links for further information, and sign up for each individual challenge.

Dates: Various throughout the year

Location: Derbyshire

Difficulty: Expert

Kiltwalk:

Walkers unite for one of Scotland’s largest events. This may not be as gruelling a challenge as the aforementioned ones, but at 26 miles it’s no walk in the park either. The family friendly event is held in Glasgow, Aberdeen, Dundee and Edinburgh every year and encourages ‘Kiltwalkers’ to walk and raise money for their chosen charity.

There are three different journeys to choose – The Mighty Stride, The Big Stroll and The Wee Wander, all of which are different distances respectively.

Dates: Various

Location: Various

Difficulty: Beginner – Intermediate

The Wild Mud Run:

Quite possibly the muddiest event known to man with swampy terrain, rolling hills and a stunning woodland area allowing for some ‘muddy’ good fun. They turn the usually tranquil parkland of Osmaston Manor into an ultimate adventure playground, with obstacle courses to suit all ages!

Location: Derbyshire

Date: 28th March

Difficulty: Beginner – Intermediate

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