It started with an idea, a challenge really. May 20 2021 was the mark of many things. It was a Thursday, it was Covid 19 pandemic day # 400+ whatever, and also my 40th birthday.
I had decided back in January to mark my fortieth birthday with something different. Due to the pandemic there was no big 40th bash to be had, no big gatherings were allowed, nothing. Thanks Covid19.
I shifted my thoughts to running. It was something I had done semi regularly years ago but had put on the shelf after my son was born, not really being able to dedicate a lot of time to.
“What about running a marathon for my 40th birthday?” It seemed like a good idea at the time. It was Covid friendly, it was outdoors, and I’m sure I could probably do it? The idea needed a catchy name, and I came up with Forty on Forty. A kilometer for every year. But I very soon realized I would want to get the achievement of a full marathon, and so I would bump it up to 42.2 as the official distance.
Training, training, training
This very quickly became my life and seemed to consume my free time. Morning runs, evening runs. Big runs on Sundays. A 16 week training course I ripped from the international network kept me on course. I was unstoppable.. well maybe not.
Who doesn’t like Adversity?
Let’s roll an ankle! The training module I set up looked great on paper, but definitely life got in the way. I rolled my ankle on a trail run early into the training, and as a result of location ended up running on the ankle an additional 10km before getting back to the car. Probably not smart, and this side lined me for a while. Dr appointment, x-ray, mild pain just putting weight on the foot. Ugh, what a set back. Slow recovery. This starts to get demoralizing.
Better with back up
Getting others involved definitely made the prospect of completing more realistic. The marathon itself was also a virtual one, so no big crowds, no race day excitement to get everyone pumped up. I was quite happy to have my brother Isaac and buddy Tristan tag in to take on the full run with me. Safety in numbers.
Weather was good, maybe too good. It was a blue bird day. It a cloud. Not a cloud? Oh no. Of course that meant we got hit with unseasonably warm weather. Great for lounging with a cold beer, basking in the sun. Not Soo much for running 40+ kilometers in.
About 40, end of Covid and looking forward
So done and dusted with the Forty on Forty project. It was quite the journey. It’s been a few years since I have been able to dedicate this much time to a project, and frankly with the year and a half we have had, it has been a nice distraction. So what’s next? At forty, I’m hoping to shake all those ideas that this is when you start getting old. I’m most likely in as good of shape as ever and don’t have plans to slow down anytime soon. As we slowly transition from the lockdown Covid19 world, I’m looking forward to making up for lost time. I’m dialed in, it’s time for adventure!
(here’s a short documentary I made capturing the journey)