Top Ten: Get tough!


Top Ten ways to strut your tough in 2011

By Matt Bennett and Jeanette Bennett,

Tough bikers can ride 50 miles of first-class downhill in an afternoon at Sundance.

Tough bikers can ride 50 miles of first-class downhill in an afternoon at Sundance.

Life is tough. We’ve said it to our kids, and we mean it, too. Life is good, says the T-shirt, but good doesn’t mean simple.

But here’s the good news. When the going gets tough, the tough get tougher.

So don’t shy away from a rock and a hard place. Strut your tough with these 10 ideas.


1. On the rocks

Utah is home to challenging rockclimbing expeditions. Life is elevated in our canyons, cliffs and boulders.

Get ready to “belay on” by practicing at The Quarry in Provo or getting equipped at Out N Back.


2. Cowboy up

If you don’t trust yourself to go “2.7 seconds on a bull named Fu Manchu,” you can still get your spurs on.

Cowboy Leaders uses ranch life to overcome leadership strife. This ranch in Birdseye, Utah, offers more than a bird’s eye view of cowboy life while helping participants get tough on the inside, too.

Rodeos from Pleasant Grove to Spanish Fork can also up your tough quota, especially if you pull on your Wranglers.


Orem’s Riven Academy offers mixed martial arts for those looking to toughen up.

Orem’s Riven Academy offers mixed martial arts for those looking to toughen up.

3. Mix and match

Mixed Martial Arts now generates more revenue than any other pay-per-view event.

Throwdown in Orem is a great place to start your own tough MMA career. Need inspiration? Meet Court McGee and Tandi Schaeffer, two of our Fab 50 (page 55).


4. Turn the page

Some would argue the best defense against life’s challenges is to be mentally tough. And tough can be found on the shelves of your local library.

Our every-issue department dubbed Made in UV (page 14) highlights pages written by Utah County wordsmiths. See our back issues at for more reading material.


5. What gives?

Help someone in tougher circumstances than your own. The Food & Care Coalition ( has ideas for service including donating produce, serving hot meals or doing an Eagle Scout project. This Provo organization has opportunities for individuals and families.


6. Raise your glass

Blowing glass at The Art Institute at Thanksgiving Point is in a glass of its own. Learning to deal with hazardous, near 1,000-degree liquefied glass will make anyone a diamond in the tough.

Exercise your creative side and sure-up your grit by signing up for a class.


7. Hot stuff

Toughen your tastebuds by requesting the hottest sauce at one of Utah Valley’s Mexican restaurants. Read about Milagro’s, Orem’s newest chips-and-salsa mecca, on page 96.


8. In the long run

To finish a race is to prove your toughness. Visit to choose the pain you’ll enjoy. The Provo City Half Marathon, for example,  brought 1,400 runners to get their tough fix for 2010. Our Fab 50 (page 49) includes a husband-wife combo who have both won the St. George Marathon. Tough twosome!


9. Take a bike

Feel the ideal summer temps in Utah Valley while gliding down the Sundance slopes on your two-wheeler.


10. On call

Need one last way to get tough? Can you take it? Apply for a job at one of Utah Valley’s call centers.

But before your first day on the job, get tips on staying calm in our “tough jobs” story on page 26.


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