Dean Karnazes was the topic of discussion in our teenager’s recent civics class. Specifically, the center of focus was his accomplishment of running a marathon a day in each of the 50 states over a 50 day period. Let that sink in a minute. That’s 26.2 miles everyday for 50 straight days. From my experience, the day after you run 26.2 miles, it’s hard to even walk.
In relaying the class discussion to me, I was asked “how could he do that?” and “why would he do that?” Well, the “why” was easy to answer: adventure and challenge. The “how”? I had to say I was more at a loss. Hours later that question came to mind again. I know Karnazes must have trained his body and mind over a long time to be able to reach this level. I do not know the technical aspects of his training but I would assume it would be along the same lines as training for a marathon but more intense. But the “how” question brought to mind one of the things that fascinate me about physical pursuits. What is our limit? How powerful can the mind become in overcoming the body’s objections? Chances are our potential is far beyond what we think.