After 11 months of planning, the first Weekday Warrior finally took place! We ended with a total of 14 registrations, 4 completed challenges and various participants joining for bits of each runner’s journey. Even though there were many ups and downs along the way (being an athlete and race organizer at the same time is a lot harder than I thought – gave me a lot of ideas though), none the less, I couldn’t be happier. Here’s my story of one of the toughest work weeks I’ve had in a while.
Day 0: Pre-race preparation for running 5 marathons during one work week is very different than what I had experienced before. Most races require transition planning (i.e. what do you wear after each segment of the race). In this case, I had to plan not only for at least 10 separate runs, but I had to pre-plan each day’s work attire AND cook a week’s worth of food in advance. Fortunately, I was lucky to have a friend who spent six hours with me on Sunday preparing all the veggie Lasagnes. Also, pre-race planning typically involves dropping a bike or race clothing at a particular destination before the event, where as in this case I had to go to the office to drop-off all my run-work-run transition clothing and as well as the required nutrition. I had a good laugh to myself when I arrived in the office at 10pm thinking once more for the thousandth time in my life “what am I doing”.
Day 1: I start at 8am and my barber who was supposed to meet me at 8:30am did not show up (unfortunately, he got sick at the last minute). Morale was low for a while. Luckily, my close friend and positive critic showed up and ran with me the rest of the marathon. During those 3 hours he a) questioned the whole weekday warrior concept b) told me the idea didn’t work and c) said the concept is creating a less sustainable future. My morale remained low. Luckily, on the 32nd kilometer, my two other friends showed up and told my close critic of a friend to be quiet and that he was wrong. My morale was high afterwards. Things were starting to look better. Also, we had pizza and tiramisu. One marathon down, four to go.
Day 2: Started running at 6:30am, but had to go to work after only 11km (31km left to enjoy during the evening). Run-to-work transition was successful. Shirt was ironed and I answered all the e-mails. Meetings were also very productive. Good stuff.
Day 3: Morning was fine, but the afternoon got tricky. Ran after work and was lucky to have a friend with me. That was fun. BUT, I had to give a presentation to Canadians at 6.30pm. The run-work-run-work-run transitions were successful. BUT, I did not remember the session would last a full 1.5 hrs. Therefore, I got home late from yet another long evening run. Huhuh. At least the presentation was a success.
Day 4: It’s starting to be enough. On the fourth marathon, at some point, you just have to stop for a moment with your friend and just laugh out loud “seriously, what are we doing”. Also, the problem with going to work and running a marathon is that you’re always running out of time due to un-planned surprises. Every night you run back home late, eat and then realize you’re already late for bed. This means less sleep and the re-occuring thought of “argh, go to go running again in a few hours”.
Day 5: Luckily, there were no surprises. Morning run worked out. Work worked out and the evening run and celebrations were more memorable for me than I could have imagined. The first Weekday Warrior was done. I couldn’t have been more grateful for all of those who helped and joined the journey. It was all more than what I could have hoped and I couldn’t wait for more adventures to come.
Final note: As a personal commitment to my run, I chose to donate to charity that helps protect children in Ukraine and an NGO called Honest Work, a charity dedicated to help workers change their companies for the better. I chose these two charities because I want to continue supporting those affected by a crisis that should have never happened and to support a friend who has dedicated his work to a cause I believe in.