Three Days In May

Meditations in Motion
Bill is not holding up a “Victory” or “Peace” sign. It’s the number of our run – 2.

Running won’t solve all your problems. But then again, neither will housework.

I have written here about my recent running struggles. Long runs are especially troublesome.

One day a few weeks ago, I was browsing social media, looking for some inspiration, when I came across some posts about a 4x4x48 Challenge.

Intrigued, I researched it.

Apparently, this running challenge, the brainchild of former Navy SEAL and endurance athlete David Goggins, has been around for several years. It has recently gained popularity due to the cancelation of all real-life races.

In this challenge, I read, you run four miles every four hours for 48 hours. A total of 48 miles.

That’s insane, I thought. Who would do that?

If you believe everything you read on Twitter, apparently a lot of young, macho, Navy SEAL-type guys with hashtags like #stayhard and #canthurtme.

I thought about doing a scaled-back version, maybe 24 hours rather than 48, then put it out of my mind.

Until my friend, Nancy called.

Now, I will not say Nancy has been the instigator of every crazy thing I do, but she has been instrumental in a lot of them.

Have you ever heard of the 4x4x48 Challenge?” she asked.

Yessss,” I replied cautiously.

Wanna do it?

All of a sudden, I did want to do it. Wild horses couldn’t keep me from participating.

I needed something bold, something audacious, something to shake me out of my funk. And I wanted to do it immediately, which, as it turns out, suited Nancy.

She planned to begin the challenge on Friday, six days from our initial conversation, with two other running friends, practicing social distancing, of course.

The problem was, I live a 50-minute drive away from Nancy and our other two friends. I could not picture myself making that drive twice every four hours, in addition to running four miles. I also could not stay at Nancy’s house for obvious reasons. Logistically, it seemed impossible.

I thought about it, then called her back. “OK“, I told her, “I can’t run with you. I am going to run by myself, here, at my house. We can keep in touch during the challenge and encourage each other.

And that was my plan.

I have to admit, the thought of running by myself in the middle of the night was not appealing, but I didn’t think my husband and running partner Bill would want to do the challenge.

As it turns out, he didn’t want to do the challenge, but he didn’t want me running by myself in the middle of the night more, so at the last minute, he agreed to run with me for the first 24 hours.

Friday, May 1

Meditations in Motion

At 2:00 Friday afternoon, we set out on our first run, full of excitement, energy, and high expectations. I had to tell Bill several times to slow down. “We are going to be running a lot of miles,” I reminded him.

We finished the first run in the 10-minute/mile range and returned home to get something to eat.

The second run, at 6:00 p.m., was similar to the first.

At 10:00 p.m., we had our first taste of running in the dark, definitely not something I love, and our pace slowed to 11-minutes/mile.

Saturday, May 2

Meditations in Motion

Saturday, I thought, would be the make-or-break day for us. With six runs on the schedule, the first one at 2:00 a.m., Saturday threatened to be a grueling day.

Luckily, that threat never materialized.

While getting up at 1:45 a.m. to run at 2:00 a.m. wasn’t especially fun, we completed runs four through nine without issue. We had four different four-mile loops we alternated between, depending on our mood and conditions.

Our pace remained steady at right around 11 minutes/mile, our spirits remained high, and, best of all, Bill decided to run all 12 runs with me, rather than only the first 6 as he originally planned.

All I did that day was run, eat, and sleep. I know, you’re thinking “Perfect day,” right?

Sunday, May 3

Meditations in Motion

And then Sunday happened.

When we woke up for our 2:00 a.m. run, it was raining. We had already run 36 miles with 12 miles left to go, and we were a little hesitant to step out into a dark, rainy night.

To make matters worse, Bill checked on the radar and an angry red-and-orange-colored blob was bearing down on us. While I typically don’t mind running in the rain, thunderstorms are another matter.

We made the decision to postpone our run for an hour, reset the alarm, and tried to get another 45 minutes of sleep.

When the alarm woke us, the worst rain had passed and we completed the run, our last middle-of-the-night foray.

We woke for our next run after only two hours rest, rather than the usual three. My stomach was upset and I couldn’t eat before leaving the house.

I stumbled through our 11th run after a 12-hour fast, and definitely felt the lack of fuel. Our pace dropped to 12 minutes/mile.

At 10:00 on Sunday morning, after forcing myself to eat some breakfast, we headed out for our final run. My belly was protesting, my legs were shredded, and I was in dire need of some uninterrupted sleep but there was no way I was not going to complete this last leg of the challenge.

Surprisingly, the pace for our final run dropped again to the 11-minute/mile range. Even though I had to compel myself to eat, fueling up was the right decision.

We stepped onto our front porch, exhausted, happy, and ready to celebrate with the beer and guacamole I had been fantasizing about for two days.

We took long, hot showers, then called our friends who also completed the challenge to swap congratulations and war stories.

Sometimes I need a powerful reminder I can do hard things.

And laundry. Running 12 times over 48 hours produces a mountain of laundry. As it turns out, even runners have to do housework.

 

You can find the places I link up here.

Please click on the following link to read more funny or inspirational one-liners. One-Liner Wednesday.

Meditations in Motion

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

95 comments

  1. Just wow. I had to laugh when you said your friend Nancy was instrumental in many of your schemes – I have a bestie like that but she lives in Wellington, NZ & so many of our schemes have begun with a bottle of wine (either in person or virtual) followed by one of us saying ‘seriously, how hard could it be?’ Well done for this mammoth challenge.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I am in awe. And exhausted just thinking about this! From the girl who was struggling with emotions during recent runs to the girl who ran 48 miles in as many hours. You are such a wonder. Such an inspiration. So proud of you. So envious, too. I might be able to do 7 miles in 7 days! Think I will set that baby goal for this next week. Stay tuned.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. That’s nuts. Every day I walk into a giant 100 year old library and feel my way through the dark until I hit the rooms with windows. Yesterday, I browsed the basement library shelves by flashlight. I find both of these activities moderately creepy as a result of watching the Walking Dead for a year as I rode my spin bike. The thought of going out running in ‘haunted gettysburg’ at 2AM makes me sick to my stomach. I have no idea how I would run with my head on backwards to make sure no one and nothing creeped up behind me. I don’t think I’ll ever be giving your challenge a try.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, well, as far as I know, Lititz is not haunted like Gettysburg is. I was definitely creeped out at the thought of running alone at 2 a.m. but it wasn’t scary with Bill. If I would have had to run by myself, I mapped our street (.25 miles) and was prepared to run back and forth 16 times if I had to.

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  4. Y’all did it!!! I was waiting to see what insane thing you were going to do, and my eyes bugged out when I read the outline of the challenge. What an undertaking! Thankfully you didn’t need an undertaker after it.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Awesome, Laurie!!! Getting up in the middle of the night to run through the rain… just amazing!
    So nice of Bill to join you, too.
    You deserve all the guacamole and beer you want. Well done.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. This is incredible! I really cant imagine running that often, for so many reasons. How nice that your husband was willing to do this with you! Even if I could be talked into doing something this crazy, I dont think my husband would be joining me lol. (I’d probably be doing my middle of the night runs on the treadmill). I can only imagine how much laundry you have from this. Very impressive!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Wendy. I read about the Yeti challenge. That WILL be tough! I read about it on your post this morning. Maybe we will get to read a recap from you! šŸ™‚

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  7. Congrats on being up for the challenge! So glad Bill was there for you.

    Gotta admit I’m not a big David Goggins fan (couldn’t even finish his audiobook), but different strokes for different folks. And sometimes you just need a challenge!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Right! I was thinking about the comparisons to a Ragnar while I was running last weekend. We did get to sleep in our own bed and take showers whenever we wanted, though and we ran about 3x as far as you do in a typical Ragnar. I did miss the fun of having a team.

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  8. You guys are amazing. There aren’t many reasons I would ever get up at 2:00 am and none, except maybe the house being on fire that would cause me to run. I am glad your hubs didn’t let you run alone – he can file tha tunder – “she’s crazy, but she’s my crazy.” šŸ™‚

    Good job!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. What an amazing feat, Laurie!!!!! Huge CoNgRats!!!!!! This 4X4X48 challenge has been teasing me for the last week or so. I’m oh-so-tempted, but have not (yet) committed to it. Stay tuned….

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Kim. You could do it. Bill and I are trained for a half marathon but the last marathon we ran was the same as you – MCM. From reading your posts, I can tell you – you are in better shape than I am! šŸ™‚

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  10. OH MY GOSHHHHHHHHHHHH- what an accomplishment!!!I love you took on the challenge – that your husband joined in – you had friends doing it afar… just all of it – I’m clapping my hands for you right now!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. OMG, Laurie!!! This is totally crazy and totally amazing and I am SO happy for you! Wow, wow, wow. A-mazing. Inspiring is a complete understatement. Do you think Bill considered pacing you in the car for the middle-of-the-night runs? Probably not, because he’s a runner. But that’d have been my solution šŸ™‚ You guys…incredible.

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  12. Congratulations! I’ve been hearing a lot about these types of challenges lately and they are such an amazing accomplishment. And it’s great that Bill stuck with it! Would you do it again?

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  13. Congratulations! Those middle of the night runs are rough! It’s been years but I used to run and had a virtual running group of 5 others, spread out all over the country that I’d “met” through an online weight loss group. We used to run ‘together’ via conference call once a month. LOL, it was mostly just having a bunch of people gasping for air in my ear as I gasped for air but it was fun anyway.

    Again, Congratulations! That’s a pretty difficult challenge!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Wow, that is impressive. Kudos to you both! I do not have the ankles for running but I do enjoy a hike or walk. Take care and stay well. Enjoy your day, wishing you a happy weekend ahead!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Huh. You did this challenge on purpose? Not like someone forced you to do it? I am a sloth of course, so any running is beyond me, but this? I applaud you from my couch. Way to go, runner girl.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Tracy. It was crazy. Bill and I are retired so it’s not like we only have the weekend to rest. Every day is the same for us, so I could eventually catch up on my sleep! šŸ™‚ I was very glad Bill di it with me too.

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  16. How exciting Laurie! Good for you both doing this and in the middle of the night as well. You have got stamina to do this – that is for sure. (Even if you felt bedraggled, hungry and pretty worn out – you still got ‘er done.) I was curious what you were doing and at one time you had commented to me in a post that you were in the middle of it. That made me scratch my head – “this is not an ongoing event/project?” This will right your ship – thank you for sharing the experience with us … I must now step up my game too!!!

    Liked by 1 person

      • Good for you and Bill Laurie. I signed up for a virtual 5K for Fish & Loaves today. I decided I’d do this one as it’s a good charity – food pantry and they rely on donations only. So if it doesn’t snow tomorrow morning (snowing lightly now), I’ll do my virtual walk. I have until June 30th to get it done, but won’t get the teeshirt and finishing medal (medal to first 300 people who finish) until after July 1st, so will write a post about it then. I’m late on all my posts anyway these days.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Oh, that is so nice, Linda! Good for you. We donated some of our Coronavirus check to our local food pantry. They are so needed right now. It snowed here last night. That was a record. I lost my basil plants and some marigolds. It’s supposed to be 80 by the end of the week. I’m ready! I will look forward to reading your post about your virtual 5k.

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      • I went to Heritage Park Laurie – the directions were you could go to any venue you wanted, any time between May 4th and June 30th. That is where it is usually held. I could not remember the route in the neighborhood though I’ve done the 5K twice, we go down a series of streets and through a small dense woods … I skipped that part, but I just walked twice through the historical village, into the botanical gardens where a few annuals have been planted, but seemed to survive (those cold-weather pansies are hardy), the small farm and on the actual walking track they have. I took a lot of photos. I was wondering whether to wait til I got my shirt/finishing medal (after the virtual walking period ends on June 30th) or just post beforehand? I have more gosling shots – hate to hold them up.

        I posted my results on line but I don’t have a smartphone to verify how I did … but I did post it online without verification. No biggie –
        it was a good cause and will be fodder for a post. We had a little snow and it was only 31 when I got to Heritage Park this morning and a 12 mph wind … not fun walking – we have some more snow coming Sunday night, but not measurable. Last weekend we had 80 degrees. Hard to believe.

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      • I’m glad you got it done, Linda. I had some annuals that did not survive the cold. I do have a smartphone but I usually don’t run with it. I did some virtual races without verification either. Bill got me a GPS watch for Mother’s Day so now I don’t have any excuse not to verify my runs! We have been having wacky weather too. We just about got blown away when we walked Benji this afternoon. He can’t walk very far anymore and now he is all tuckered out. Asleep for the afternoon no doubt.

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      • We will break a record tonight by going just to 32 – a record since 1938. Just amazing weather. It was very cold this morning, but the snow was gone, likely blown away from the wind.

        How thoughtful of Bill to get the GPS watch for you for Mother’s Day Laurie- now you are all set.

        Sorry to hear about Benji slowing down. A fellow blogger goes on long treks every morning with his dog Jack. Jack is willing and ready to go on walks and Fred often writes that Jack will often be fast asleep in his dog bed, but when a walk is announced, just the idea of a walk turns him into a different dog.

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      • Ha! Benji used to be that way. He does perk up when a walk is announced but even then, he is still pretty slow. His legs go out from under him sometimes when he walks on the wood floors or tile. He is better sticking to the area rugs.

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      • I think the slick floors are bad for dogs and years ago, my Aunt’s dog slipped on the floor and his toenail hit a corner round and the nail came off. It was the same thing happened to Shelley’s dog recently. My aunt lived with my grandmother and my grandmother didn’t drive – they had to find someone to take the dog to the emergency vet all because he slid on the floor and his legs went out from under him.

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  17. Well Laurie, I don’t know whether to feel impressed or just to write you off as a complete crazy woman!! Seriously though, what an acheivement. I quite like the idea of running at night, if I could run that is! I’m glad Bill did it too, what a team, and your friend too!

    Liked by 1 person

  18. That is amazing. A huge well done to you for completing the challenge. Good idea to postpone the 2am Sunday run and avoid the thunderstorm. I hope you have recovered from it all now! #WotW

    Liked by 1 person

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