It wasn’t a usual day, as the number of corona positive cases increased, the lockdown kept on getting extended and suddenly an unusual person (because he goes from peak training to no training at all in a day) started talking about David Goggins’ challenge, which is running a 4 mile/km every 4 hours for 48 hours. This sounded really odd because of the suffering one has to go through with lack sleep deprivation, nutrition, proper recovery and most importantly being mentally stable for so long. We were aware of all this, but somehow that sounded fun. After analyzing the lockdown situation in our respective towns Atharva, Yashas and I decided to do take up this challenge, where we could have done 4km every 4 hours but Atharva and yashas suggested it would be more “challenging” if we do 4 miles instead of 4 kms which is almost 6.5kms. Honestly it made sense for the tag, “challenge.” So, we finally started @12 AM on Friday midnight which just turned into Saturday (yes, we runners spend our weekends like this).
To explain the scenario about the suffering in detail, we started the run at 12 and if we took an average of 45-55 mins to complete that 6.5km. By then it would be 12:50 a.m. and by the time we finish it, came back to our room and take off our shoes will take another 10 mins. Freshening up will take 10 mins and eating something will take at least another 5 mins making it 1:15 AM. But obviously we won’t get sleep all of a sudden. So, let’s say I slept at 1:45 (actually I slept around 2:45). Now I have to wake up again in 2 hours for the next run. So, even though it was a 50 mins run, we got less than 2 hours of time before the next run. We were pretty much sleep deprived after the 1st 24 hours itself. The initial couple of runs went smoothly except I had to run at mid-night in a small town, and luckily no one saw me, whereas Yashas was running in his society, and it was 8 AM where Atharva resides so, it wasn’t a problem for him for those couple of runs.
Strike 1: 4th run was @12 PM!!! Many of us prefer not to walk on that time, I don’t even want to step out at that time. The heat just didn’t let us run, and once you run continuously you can’t even eat much, so were nutritionally deprived too. But somehow we finished that run. The real problem was that Yashas’s ankle started hurting, and his father (he did 4km each time, bravo) twisted his ankle too, later Atharva had some pain in his upper body (Dr. Pranav told it was nothing after analyzing few things), and my body was heating up a lot.
Strike 2: This was when it started getting real, we couldn’t run as fast as we could in the start, which led to hardly 1:30hr of recovery time before the next run. We started walking and jogging in the middle too, we were tired, we needed to have some nutritious food, but we couldn’t eat much, even though we didn’t realize it at the time, we needed some sleep. In addition to this, as it was my thesis submission day and Yashas had assignments at some particular time, we couldn’t get proper rest.
Let me put strike 3 in my view alone
Strike 3: The questions- Why? Why am I doing this? Do I get any sort of certificate or medal out of this? Hell no. Can I use this run data as a qualification for some major race? Nope. Is this good for my physical body? I wish, but rather it’s quite the opposite. I am physically drowning. So, what is the whole point of this challenge? The answer is suffering. The suffering teaches me something no one could ever teach me, it teaches me many deeper things in life. It teaches me from breathing to loving yourself and your loved ones. It teaches me the value of every tiny thing in life. It shows me endless things, to be happy, proud, and thankful for, and the list could go on and on.
So, if I could put this in non-running jargon, we always remember how happy we were after our board exams or any other major exams got over, because to complete those exams we have suffered a lot in our ways. At the same time, many of us have watched many movies and series, sitting on the couch, having nothing to stress about. But we still categorize the “after” exams moments as the happier moment than the sitting in the couch moment and honestly we can hardly recollect those moments.
Try to work-hard on something you really love and are passionate about, you will find a whole new world. Whatever that is, suffering is inevitable, and is the main subject you need to pass. But what makes a difference is, which way you choose to suffer.
Find your way of suffering, you will find ____________ (you will be able to fill it).
This article was written by Anish Aithal.