Exactly 14 years ago, in late June of 2008, I met Michael Wardian for the first time. He was attempting to break the world record for the fastest treadmill marathon and I was there to support him. My friend Michael Hayden had introduced me to Mike and we went to the event together. Details about that day are in this blog post. I was creating videos long before Instagram Reels were even invented!
Fast forward to last weekend, I once again found myself supporting Mike Wardian. (There were definitely some chess tournaments in between these two events!)
Michael Wardian is currently running across the United States. He started in San Francisco on May 1st, and by last weekend, he had made it all the way to West Virginia. He averages 50+ miles each day and is raising money for World Vision, which provides clean water to those who need it. At the time if this posting he has raised about $73,000 on a goal of $1000,000.
Greg and I decided to drive out to West Virginia on Sunday and run with him. We could have waited until he was closer, but we figured he would have plenty of support near home. We wanted to run with him when he might otherwise be alone.
The day before, we prepared everything we needed, making sure we didn't arrive empty handed. We had a
list of Mike's favorite things, which included ice packs, cold wet towels, coconut water, dill pickles, and fresh fruit. We even bought a new cooler for the occasion!
We left our house at around 6:00am, knowing that it would take us around 2 hours to meet up with him. Mike has run the majority of his miles on Rte. 50, and that is the road he took through WV. As we got closer, we noticed that there was hardly any shoulder space to run on. And the curves were tight with cars driving quickly around them. Yikes- this did not seem like a safe thing to be doing!
It was so amazing to chat with Mike and hear all about his journey. I had so many questions for him:
- How many pairs of shoes have you gone through? 3 - 4 pairs of Hokas.
- Do you shower in the RV? Yes.
- Do you sleep in the RV each night? We had been, but lately have been staying at hotels.
- What percent of this have you run alone vs. with others? 85% of the time alone.
- How are you feeling? Pretty decent
|Police car in the background