Eric Hillman, CEO & Co-Founder, during his tough mudder challenge with Joe Babick from Giant Sports

Eric Hillman, Europa CEO & Co-Founder, during his tough mudder challenge with Joe Babick from Giant Sports

Some say it takes guts to start a business. For Eric “Big E” Hillman, co-founding Europa Sports Products was the most natural decision in the world. To him, fitness is a lifestyle-and he actively works at it, because that’s just who he is. But you don’t have to take our word for it. He’ll prove it to you.

Last fall, Eric participated in his first Tough Mudder obstacle course. Below is a quick look at how our CEO trains tough. Nothing stops this guy—not even getting shocked on the final obstacle.

Training Is Not A Place. It’s A State Of Mind.

Eric spent part of his time training at the U.S. National White Water Training Center, which is also an official Olympic training spot. He ran the trails, which offered several miles of root-infested, rocky terrain and multiple obstacles like walls, rope ladders and Monkey Bars. He also hit the on-site gym at our headquarters in Charlotte, and spent time at the National Olympic Velodrome Center in South Carolina, where he completed miles of grueling interval training.

Gear Up.

Making sure you have the right equipment is all part of a strong fitness plan. In fact, Europa Sports recently expanded its lineup of functional fitness equipment. You can be sure Eric hit the heavy ropes often as part of his training. Eric also geared up with a new knee wrap and sported gloves during his trail runs. However he may have learned the hard way that it’s essential to find the right fit, when it comes to compression shorts.

Supplement Your Training.

Our bodies work like machines. They cannot run without fuel. And sometimes they need repaired. Eric took BCAA’s, protein, and Cytomax. Not to mention various pre-workout supplements. The day of the race, he took a special pre-race concoction made by Bruce Kneller and Joe Babick of Giant Sports.

Even though Eric prepared himself physically for the race-building up his endurance, strength, and muscle mass – he admits to underestimating what the intensity of the course would do to his level of recuperation. Not to mention, his electrolytes. Here at Europa Sports, we’re already helping him research additional supplements to improve his performance and rate of recovery for Challenge. We should also mention that we’re coaching him on how to avoid taking a jolt of electricity to the face in the final obstacle.

Success Is For The Hard Core.

Whether it’s running a business or running one of the toughest obstacle courses on the planet, Big E can attest to this fact: There’s no faking it. And there’s only one way to the top. Success is a test of true grit.