FAQs & Rules

General Rules

  1. Tough Ruck 2020 takes place in Minuteman National Park, Park Rules and the Park Rangers are to be respected at all times.
  2. Tough Ruck participants are made up of any member of the Armed Forces currently serving, Veterans, First Responders, and Civilians. This extends across borders and is an open invite to our allied brothers and sisters around the world.
  3. All participants will wear footwear.
  4. Marchers in the heavy division must have a minimum of 35 pounds in their rucksacks/backpacks, which will be weighed at the start and verified at the finish line. Marchers in the light division must have a minimum of 15 pounds in their rucksacks/backpacks, which will be weighed at the start and verified at the finish line.
  5. The frame of the ruck/backpack will count towards the weight limit for all divisions.
  6. Weighted vests are not allowed in any category in place of the ruck weight.
  7. No trash (especially banana peels and orange peels) may be left along the course except at trash collection points at the water stations.  All Ruckers must take their trash with them.  Any Rucker who dumps trash along the course will be disqualified and will NOT receive a medal.
  8. Removal, destruction, or tampering with any signs or markers is strictly prohibited, including Tough Ruck course marker flags. Any Rucker who removes, tampers with, or destroys any sign or marker will be disqualified and will NOT receive a medal.
  9. Refunds will not be given due to inclement weather or cancellation of the march.
  10. Good sportsmanship is expected at all times!
  11. Due to the duration and intense physical challenge, you must be at least 18 years old to take part in the 26.2 mile Tough Ruck.  Each Rucker will need to show a photo ID with date of birth.  Any Rucker found providing false information and/or using a fake/false ID will be disqualified and unable to participate in any Tough Ruck event in the future.
  12. Timing discrepancies must be made known NLT 24 hours after the event. After 7 days all times are considered official and results stand.
  13. All Awards are presented at the Tough Ruck post race awards presentation. The awards presentation will take place on the afternoon of the Tough Ruck at the Finish Line. No awards will be mailed.

When does 2021 registration open?

The opening day of Tough Ruck 2021 Registration is TBD.

I am a civilian.  Can I Tough Ruck?

Yes. The Ruck is open to active military, veterans, first responders, and civilians.  We recommend civilians read the Tough Ruck Guide for recommendations on footwear, Ruck sack and more.

Do I have to fundraise to participate?

Yes.  Each person is individually responsible for their fundraising commitment based on the registration option chosen.  You are able to join a team however the fundraising commitment is each individual rucker’s responsibility. The funds you commit to raise will provide much needed support for military families and families of Fallen Heroes. You without exaggeration will be providing a lifetime to countless others.  Thank you for choosing this mission.

I REALLY want the Boston Marathon Jacket but I’m worried about not making the fundraising minimum.  Help!

We love that you love the full swag and to support the mission. We’d highly recommend you register at the fundraising minimum you know you can achieve.  If you fundraise enough to meet other swag levels ($950 or $1500) by February 20th, you will earn the additional swag.  Please make sure you contact us by February 20th to let us know so we can get your sizes for the hoodie and the Boston Marathon Jacket! We are unable to order additional swag after the deadline of February 20th.

I am working hard to meet my fundraising goal.  What is the deadline?  What if I don’t meet the goal?

All Tough Ruckers ruck and fundraise to support the mission! We can’t thank you enough for literally making a difference in the life of a military family through Military Friends Foundation 501c3. March 31st is your fundraising deadline. Each Rucker will need to meet their fundraising goal by 11:59PM EST on March 31, 2020. For example, if you committed to raise $950 and on March 31st you have raised $900, then you will be charged the remaining balance of $50. Please note we are unable to credit any offline donations that have not been received at our office by March 23rd this includes matching funds.
Giving makes us all feel great but the key is making the ASK to your circle and beyond. Concerned? There is still time to fundraise! Enlist you friends and family to assist. While they might not be able to personally give more, they may be able to give you their time by promoting an event. Local restaurants such as Walburgers, Panera, Chipotle, Fudruckers and more have fundraising nights where a portion of the sales can go to your fundraising.

Is there a minimum to the weight of the Ruck Sack?

Yes.  Ruck sacks will be weighed in prior to the start time and immediately after crossing the finish line.  You will NOT be permitted to ruck if your ruck sack does not weigh in at a minimum of 15 pounds.  If your ruck comes in under the Minimum weight for your division at the Finish Line you will be disqualified.

*Military Heavy Division – Open to all active military, veterans and retirees.  Each Rucker will wear: a blouse, trousers, safety belt, regulation issued boots, and a ruck/assault pack/regulation pack issued by branch of service.  The minimum weight in the Military Heavy division is 35 pounds.  See info below.

*Military Light Division – Open to all active military, veterans and retirees.  Each Rucker will wear: a blouse, trousers, safety belt, regulation issued boots, and a ruck/assault pack/regulation pack issued by branch of service.  The minimum weight in the Military Light division is 15 pounds.  See info below.

*Civilian Heavy Weight Division – Ruckers in the Civilian Heavy Weight division will carry a minimum of 35 pounds in their ruck at weigh in and at the finish line.  You can wear any apparel you would like in this category.

*Civilian Light Weight Division – Ruckers in the Civilian Light Weight division will carry a minimum of 15 pounds in their ruck at weigh in and at the finish line.  You can wear any apparel you would like in this category.

I registered for the wrong division, what should I do?

Your division is officially assigned at the weigh station.  You do not need to contact us if you have changed your weight division.  Please make sure you read the rules carefully for the Military Division and Uniformed First Responder dress requirements.

How can I donate to support a Rucker?

First THANK YOU!  You can search your Rucker or their team by clicking on the donate button at www.crowdrise.org/toughruck2020.  Your donation is tax deductible and is made through a secure site.  Please note all donations are non-refundable. Donations made online will appear on the donors credit card statement as WePay Military Friends Foundation.

How can I Volunteer?

Volunteers are a critical part of the making this day a success.  Our volunteers receive a Tough Ruck volunteer shirt and lunch!  If you wish to volunteer please complete the volunteer application here.
Tough Ruck will be hosting a volunteer meeting and buffet dinner, March 15th 2020 at 5pm at Bertucci’s 4054 Mystic Valley Parkway, Medford, MA. Please RSVP to Info@toughruck.org

Am I able to cancel? Can I get a refund?

Unfortunately, we are unable to offer any refunds of any type.  If you are registering with a team that covers your registration fee, please check with them before you register as we are unable to refund the fee once you register.  Please make sure you can commit to both the event and the fundraising before you register.  When you register you are reserving a bib and are committing funds to support military families in times of need.

I am unable to participate due to injury, illness or unexpected circumstances and need to drop out.

We’re very sorry to hear that!  However, like other major marathon events, including The Boston Marathon, once you register Tough Ruck is NOT able to allow for any cancellations, bib transfers or any changes to your registration, including fulfilling the fundraising commitment you made.  The fundraising deadline to raise the funds you have committed is March 31, 2020.  At that time, if you have not raised these funds, you will be charged the remaining balance.

Is there a tax ID for donations?

Military Friends Foundation is the official charity of Tough Ruck.  The non-profit ID is 37-1462599. Military Friends Foundation is the d/b/a for Friends of the National Guard and Reserve Families, Inc.  Donations made online will appear on the donors credit card statement as WePay Military Friends Foundation.

I have a friend who wants to write a check instead of making an online donation.  Can this be added to my online fundraising?

Yes.  Please make sure the donor includes your name when they send their check.  Please make checks payable to: Military Friends Foundation, 6 Beacon Street Suite 200, Boston, MA 02108. Please allow up to two weeks for the donation to appear online.  All checks must be received by 5PM March 23, 2020 in order to be credited onto your fundraising total before the deadline. We are unable to credit any funds until they are received this includes matching funds.

I set up a fundraiser online through another site.  Does that count towards my fundraising goal?

We are only able to track and count fundraising done through the Tough Ruck official registration site at www.crowdrise.org/toughruck2020.  If you have raised funds elsewhere you will need to make a donation to your page yourself to transfer these funds in order for them to appear on your official Tough Ruck fundraising page.

How old do I have to be to Ruck?

Due to the duration and intense physical challenge, you must be at least 18 years old to take part in the 26.2 mile Tough Ruck.  Each Rucker will need to show a photo ID with date of birth.  Any Rucker found providing false information and/or using a fake/false ID will be disqualified and unable to participate in any Tough Ruck event in the future.

Am I able to get a refund?

Unfortunately, we are unable to offer any refunds of any type as this event.  If you are registering with a team that covers your registration fee, please check with them before you register as we are unable to refund the fee or the bib to the team once you register.

Will you supply the ruck sack?

No.  All Ruckers must supply their own rucks.  Please check out the training guide for more information on the ruck. Civilian Ruckers may use a military ruck or a back pack that holds the weight required for their division. Military rucks may be purchased online or often at a military supply store.  Each ruck must weigh in at a minimum at of 15 pounds to participate.

Can I use the Tough Ruck Logo for fundraising?

Tough Ruck is trademarked. Requests to use the Tough Ruck name and/or Logo must be received in writing at info@toughruck.org and you must receive written approval prior to the use of our name and/or logo for any fundraiser and/or on any marketing materials including t-shirts, coins, hats, etc.

Can I use the Tough Ruck bib to fundraise for other non-profits?

No.  We appreciate your involvement and support of many tremendous causes.  That being said, Tough Ruck is the signature fundraising event for Military Friends Foundation each year and provides critical resources for military families.  We do not allow any of the limited 1000 Tough Ruck bibs to be used to fundraise for any other event or non-profit.

Am I able to transfer my bib?

No, bibs are not transferable for Tough Ruck.  You will need a government issued photo ID to pick-up your bib (e.g. license, military ID).  Any rucker found using a fake/false ID or transferring a bib will be disqualified and unable to participate in the event in the future.

I want to register again but didn’t meet my fundraising commitment in the past?

We appreciate your continued interest.  If for some reason you didn’t meet your fundraising commitment in the past and we weren’t able to automatically bill the credit card you left on file we reached out to you to make a donation to your page.  We are limited to 1000 Tough Ruck bibs and we count on your commitment to our military families.  We reserve the right to reject registration if you have not been able to meet your fundraising commitment in the past.  We encourage you to contact us before registering.