The toughest challenge I have ever done.
Much harder than the Marathon des Sables!
When Brooks Running athlete Des Linden set herself the Run Destober challenge, the concept just resonated with me.. such a brilliant idea. I had to use it straight away
At the start of the pandemic, Des ran the date in miles for each day in October
So on the 1st Oct = 1mile, 2nd Oct = 2miles etc all the way to 31st = 31miles
Think about it... from the 26th to the 31st she was running a marathon or further each day, on already tired legs.
The pandemic brought out so many crazy cool challenges (i come up with the Dutch Mountain Marathon for example haha), but Des' challenge was my favourite. It is a crazy challenge with each day getting harder than the previous.. and the last week of the month is hell
In the end she ran 800km / 500miles
I immediately thought.. I wanna plog that challenge!
But I have a full time job so I tweaked it.
(I would love to do the same, but I had to get it all done before work each day)
My Plan: PLOGUARY
Becuase I had to do it all before work I just couldn't do that distance in miles.
So I switched it to km (it is still a heck of a lot.. see below)
I would continuously plog the distance.
Let's focus on that. Normally I include plogging in my runs but like to focus on the running for a lot of the time.
By continuously plogging the time it would take doubles, even trebles. (the 28km took 5.5hrs - all before work!!!)
I also wanted to really get a lot of trash.. I wasn't focusing on trash free routes.. I tried to different routes as much as i could (see the map below) and get as much trash as I could (normally I get 100kg per month from plogging)
So.. continuous plogging the date in km for a whole month.. but which month?
February of course!!! it only has 28 days!
Of course I chose that month mainly becuase I could change the name February into Ploguary.. honest
It seemed like a clever plan except
- We had three crazy storms in the month! hahahahahaha
- It was winter
- It was dark! Increasing the distance meant getting up earlier, which meant more running in the dark!
In the end I would run 406km (planned) - with the last week being 175km (over 100miles!!!)
I had only ever run a 100mile training week, once before. eek
I did it
This is the toughest thing I have ever done.
You can see the posts on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/explore/tags/ploguary/
Why so hard?
Becuase it was all during a working month
When you do a crazy race (like Marathon des Sables, or another ultramarathon) - you have one focus; the race.
You don't worry about anything else.
For this challenge I had to do it before work, and then get a full days work in (and it was a crazy work period too). I didn't have the luxury of a raceday focus.
And the challenge is relentless.. each day gets longer. Each day is a bit harder.
Here are the final stats broken down by week..
I am so chuffed I completed it. Combining it with work was such a hard challenge.
I had only ever run a 100mile training week, once before, and for this challenge I just ran a 114mile week (my most ever).. All while picking up trash.
Here are the detailed stats Google sheet