MOST of us would celebrate our 70th birthday by putting our feet up and having a relaxing celebration.

But for Dunfermline man Mike Joiner, his idea of celebrating is to take on a gruelling Total Warrior assault course.

Former PE teacher Mike will compete in the Lake District leg of the event tomorrow (Saturday) where he will become one of the oldest competitors ever to take on the challenge.

Thirty punishing obstacles, including water, fire, ice, electricity, barbed wire and mountains of mud await Mike, who will come together with family members to accept the challenge for a second time.

The Joiners, including Commonwealth Games silver medal winning cyclist Charline and former Scotland rugby star Craig, will even do the event for a third time in six weeks when it returns to Scotland in East Lothian on September 16-17.

It will be the third-year Total Warrior has been held at Balgone Estate in North Berwick and kids will get a taste of the action this year too, as a specially designed 2km Junior Warrior course is unveiled for the first time, featuring 10 obstacles for 6-11 year olds.

In the run up to the event Mike will host free Total Warrior training sessions every Sunday morning in Aberdour, helping other competitors prepare for the obstacles ahea

He said: “I’ve always loved sport but I suppose that unlike many people, I’ve always really enjoyed the training element of it too – pushing your body and your mind to their limits in order to be the very best you can be.

“Not everyone likes that side of it and I’ve met a lot of highly talented sportspeople who just didn’t understand that without dedicating themselves to their training and constantly striving to be in peak physical condition, they wouldn’t achieve success or longevity in their sport. It’s a mindset and is a crucial ingredient for anyone who harbours a genuine ambition to operate at the highest level of their sport.

“Part of the reason I think my kids developed that mindset is that they were used to seeing me train and compete when they were growing up. My wife and I used to drag them round Europe to watch me take part in triathlons, so the idea that you had to work hard and prepare well to stand any chance of being on the podium at the end of the day became quite ingrained in them.

“It’s so important for youngsters to make that connection between hard work and success, to realise that you can have all the talent in the world but that without applying yourself day in and day out, it won’t be enough to get you to the very top.”

Joiner swears his competitive sporting days are behind him, but don’t expect him and his team to be dilly-dallying around the Total Warrior course, which tests whole-body fitness, endurance and technique, as well as mental strength.

He continued: “We had a great laugh doing Total Warrior in North Berwick a couple of years ago and there’s already 25 of us signed up to do the Scottish event in September. It’s a brilliant day out and a chance for people of all fitness levels - and now even primary school kids - to come together and enjoy the challenge.”

Mike is a former triathlete who represented Great Britain in the 1992 triathlon world championships in Ontario, Canada.

However his own significant achievements in sport are probably eclipsed by the heights he has helped others achieve as a coach, mentor, and motivator – not to mention as a father to no fewer than three international athletes.

Joiner’s eldest son Craig amassed 25 Scottish caps during a successful rugby career that also saw him earn a professional contract with Leicester Tigers.

Craig’s younger sisters, Kerry and Charline, have both represented their country – at hockey and track cycling respectively – with Charline winning a silver medal in the team sprint at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi, while youngest son Jason, described by Charline as the most gifted of them all, is about to return from Australia to complete a personal training qualification.

Obstacle races like Total Warrior have become hugely popular in recent years, with several thousand people in the UK participating each year. The slightly wacky nature of some of the physical challenges posed by this event holds no fear for Joiner, who in 1981 captained a team from Dunfermline to glory in the BBC series It’s A Knockout, winning the Scottish heat before being crowned British champions and going on to represent the UK in the international finals in Switzerland. He also coached the Dunfermline team that took part in 1999’s competition.

For more information and to enter Total Warrior for 2017 visit