I’m a lover of the world and far off places who is so excited that you’re here. Looking forward to sharing more of my world with you and all the things I love. I hope this site really does feel like a wellness oasis right here on the internet.
Writing this almost makes me feel like I’m writing on an old school Facebook status or a public diary entry because there’s no product links or recommendations, just lots of feels. We are human beings after all, so I hope this isn’t surprising. I realize that my reasoning for doing this 4×4 48 Challenge, and the way I’m planning to do it, is unique. The “why” behind it all is a little more complex than an Instagram caption can provide the space to share, so figured this would be easier. I love really good context, but will try to be concise since I know most of us read things on our mobile devices nowadays.
I happened to be browsing the internet when I came across someone doing the David Goggins 4×4 48 Challenge. I was immediately curious- it hit me at a moment when I was craving an experience that would remind me of my own physical and mental strength. In the past, I’ve done longer races or Spartan events, but I’m still not quite ready to get back into that-especially with news of new COVID variants popping up daily. I’ve never wanted to do a marathon virtually (kudos to those that do), but I wanted to do something that would require similar grit and determination, so this seemed perfect.
This year has been unlike any one I’ve experienced before. I’ve been at my lowest of lows after losing a very close loved one, and high on life the moment I got engaged. These moments happened within months of each other and within months of so many other major life moments I never stopped to process. This run is really my way of processing and forcing myself to slow down. This run is about a lot more than just miles. Before starting a new job, which officially confirms my continued life in Chicago, I looked into it and almost immediately committed to doing it between my end date in one role and start in another. Well, as per usual, life happens in mysterious ways and that’s not quite how it lined up, but it is going to be my way of closing a few unfinished chapters and allowing myself to fully come into what’s next.
I thought about doing this with friends, waiting until I was back in NYC, or connecting with the incredible folks I know in Chicago so I’d have a few people to keep me going, but I decided to physically run the miles solo for a few reasons. The main reason being I want to be present and dive deep into my own mind during these runs. The other reason being although I may be physically running alone, I’ve always got support. As I think about my loved one who is no longer here, I know he’s with me cheering me on always, but he’s not the only one. I work hard and have high standards for myself, but none of what I’ve achieved has been done alone, so this feels like a great way to honor that.
Yes, I’m running 448, 4×4 48 and any other way of writing it that means I’ll be running four miles every four hours for forty-eight hours. This format I got from David Goggins, who is well-known for all things ultrarunning. Of course, as per usual, I wanted to add my own spin on things, so I’m adding a gratitude and journaling component which is honestly the most important piece for me. Each run (set of 4 miles) is dedicated to a person or group of people in my life who has shown up for me or somehow greatly contributed to my success.
Before each run, I’ll be journaling about that person, recalling 4 of my favorite memories and writing with some prompts which I’ll probably share after all of the runs are finished. I’ll be starting off each run from a place of strength and gratitude, no matter how hard it may be or how tired I may feel. I’m going to keep these all in one place and the hope is that in future moments when I feel doubt and uncertainty, I can go back to these memories, people, moments and miles to be reminded of my strength.
The goal is to finish, of course, but also to show up for myself the way I show up for work and for others. There is no way that I can “perfectly” run each set of miles, but the goal is just to survive, progress, and be present. It’s not going to be easy, and I’ve challenged myself to start by setting boundaries. This is my way of processing in my own way on my own time, and just like a vacation, I’ll be focused on living in the moment and moving through this experience. I love to challenge my paces, push harder, and run faster, but this is about taking the time to embrace and enjoy each piece of the journey.
I’ll be present on social media and sharing the pieces of this that feel right, but I’ll also be leaning into solitude as I see fit. I’m releasing my expectations of myself and focusing on progress over perfection. As I share this now, hours before starting my run with honestly no idea how it’ll all shake out, I’m just as excited as I am nervous. I know that I’ll find a way through to the finish because while I may be running alone, I am never without support.