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The Streak


A little over 6 weeks ago, I was in a pretty unhappy place. Facing a job search again for the second time in 8 months and physically miserable. Thanks to a host of physical issues, I had not attempted a run in over 9 months. Somewhere in that timeline, I stumbled on this simple challenge from Runner’s World called the #RWRUNSTREAK. The goal was simple – run at least a mile a day, every day, between Memorial Day and Independence Day. For some reason this sounded like something I could try. So I went for a run to think about it.

As much as I hate to admit it, 10 months off pushed my running back to the days when I had never run before. I tried to do what I used to be able to do and it failed. Big time. I was humbled by this streak before it even started. One thing that I can be is incredibly stubborn. That’s a blessing at times and a complete curse at others. In this case, it’s been a blessing. I committed to this thing and I wanted to see it through…even if it killed me.

The streak would include running while we were on vacation in Outer Banks. That turned out to be a great time of restoration and healing for me. While the running, pace and distance were nothing to make me feel better, the soul searching I did on those runs could not have come at a better time. I continued the streak at home the last few weeks and the concrete therapy has been just what the doctor ordered. I did business with God, with myself and with others that don’t even know I was thinking of them.

While I wish I could write a story about PR times and distance records, I can’t. The physical limitations are not something I can “train away.” They are frustrating and humbling. When I match the times of my past with the times of my current, it’s defeating. But once again, this season of my life has been about breaking many things down. This season has been about breaking my pride. It’s been about breaking my dependence on myself. I can’t change this. No matter how much I train or how hard I try. I did set a goal of getting to 6 miles again before this streak ended. Thankfully I was able to achieve that distance a few times. By the end of the streak, I was able to get 4 miles consistently each day.

The final tally was 39 days and 153 miles.

What became far more important during the streak was the daily discipline and lessons learned each mile. Thank you Runners World for the challenge. It couldn’t have come at a better time.


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Comments · 8

  • Dave Parsons (@MVNUSID) · July 5, 2013

    You did a great job of meeting your goal! Proud of you, brother!

  • aaron · July 5, 2013

    Thanks Dave. Thanks for encouraging every day through the DailyMile. It really did help to have people cheering no matter the time, distance or outcome. Really appreciate you bro.

  • Rob Rice · July 5, 2013

    Amazing post my friend. Funny how we can solve the world’s problem(or at least get a grasp on our own) one mile at a time. Glad you are back on the road! Keep streaking!

    • aaron · July 5, 2013

      Thanks Rob. It was one of the most humbling seasons I’ve walked through. I wanted pace and distance of a few years ago but quickly learned it’s not about what I want. It was a daily reminder of being okay with what that day held. I’m gonna take today off, but it was good to get a discipline back. Lord knows I can use discipline. One of these days we’ll get a 5K together or something.

  • Russell Hawkins · July 5, 2013

    Love it!. I’m halfway through with a similar challenge—30 minutes of exercise every day for an entire year.

    • aaron · July 5, 2013

      Dude, that’s a Ripken like streak right there! A year? Every day? Incredible. My legs were toast after about 20 days. Can’t imagine a year.

  • Kerri · July 5, 2013

    Enjoyed this post. Made me remember seeing you out on a walk some time ago and you didn’t look like the Aaron I know. I so wanted to stop and chat with you but didn’t. You seemed down. I should have stopped. I should have stopped.

    • aaron · July 5, 2013

      Thanks Kerri. The truth is, if I didn’t look happy, I probably wasn’t and it’s best in those moments to let it pass. You made the right choice. I can really go to war with myself when running/walking. It’s not pretty. Thanks for thinking of me. Hope next time I’m a little more pleasant. :) hope you’re doing well.

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