The goal: Run every day between Thanksgiving and New Year’s.
It seemed simple enough. Put in at least a mile around the neighborhood or on the treadmill to stay active and ward off that holiday weight gain.
Even though he was busy with work, family, and the holidays, Jeremy decided he was in.
“Nicole invited me to do this challenge,” says Jeremy. “Trying to run every day during the holidays can be pretty challenging. But I signed up to do it with a few other runners, started running, and texting Nicole my run streak.”
By the time New Year’s rolled around, Jeremy decided to just keep going.
The Forrest Gump Effect
Maybe you’ve never known anyone to do a Run Streak.
But chances are pretty good you’ve heard of Forrest Gump...you know...the cult-classic film starring Tom Hanks.
In one particular scene, he describes the mindset of how the Run Streak starts for most people…
🏃♂️The beginning. “That day, for no particular reason, I decided to go for a little run,” says Gump.
🏃♂️The next mile. “So I ran to the end of the road. And when I got there, I thought maybe I'd run to the end of the town. And when I got there, I thought maybe I'd just run across Greenbow County.”
🏃♂️The Run Streak continues. “And I figured, since I've run this far, maybe I'd just run across the great state of Alabama. And that's what I did. I ran clear across Alabama.
🏃♂️Keep going. For no particular reason I just kept on goin'. I ran clear to the ocean. And when I got there, I figured, since I'd gone this far, I might as well turn around, just keep on goin'. When I got to another ocean, I figured, since I'd gone this far, I might as well just turn back, keep right on goin'.”
The Run Streak continues
That’s kind of what happened to Jeremy. Running at least one mile a day turned into a daily habit...some call it an obsession.
“I started my Run Streak on November 24, 2016,” says Jeremy. “It’s been four years and seven months. I’ve run every day for 1,673 days. I know at some point, I’ll have to stop, but that’s not today.”
Can you really run every day?
It’s not easy.
Work: Jeremy works full-time as an IT director for a school district. There’s a never-ending barrage of problems to fix internet problems, wi-fi connections, and networking issues.
Sometimes he works late or long hours that can interfere with a regular running schedule.
Ever struggle to find time to fit in a run?
Family: He’s busy with his wife and three kids, school, sports, vacations, and everything else on the to-do list.
Personal: He’s been a volunteer city council member in Sandy, Oregon, for 15 years. And he’s active in several community groups, including the Eastwind Running Club.
If you want to run every day, you’ll find a way
“I’m a creature of habit,” says Jeremy. “I’ve done other kinds of things where I kind of get obsessed with it and don’t want to break the streak.
He once geocached for 211 days straight. Hiding his own caches for others to find, and finding hidden caches, at least one every day.
He once did a daily plank challenge, never missing for 60 days straight.
And he once ran 100-plus miles a month, every month, for three years.
“He is so dedicated,” says Nicole Richards, Jeremy’s friend behind his Run Streak. “Those of us who have kept running streaks going feel very compelled to keep them alive. It’s similar to keeping your pet fed and watered or your favorite plant watered and alive.”
“You have to tend to it every day and can never miss or it’s over! Jeremy has the dedication and self discipline to continue keeping his streak alive.”
The sick-day solution
Jeremy’s run streak has almost reached five years. But let’s face it, you’re bound to get sick at some point.
Do you still run when you’re feeling sick?
When Jeremy finally got sick, he wasn’t about to let that ruin his Run Streak.
“I was running a fever and throwing up, and my wife was keeping tabs on me,” says Jeremy. “When I woke up, I realized she was teaching a piano lesson. So I threw on my running clothes, snuck out the back door, and ran my mile. Then I crawled back into bed hoping she wouldn’t find out.”
The bad-weather work-around
Ever skipped a run because of bad weather?
You know...hot temps, snow and ice, heavy rains.
It’s easy to make excuses...even skip running for good reasons.
But when you’re on a Run Streak, you think differently…
“One night I got stuck at work during a huge snow and ice storm,” says Jeremy. “Only a few people were in the office, so I opened up the building and measured out a quarter mile. Then I ran several laps up and down the stairs and around three floors to get my run in.”
Count on your support crew
If you want to be a better runner, train for a marathon, or tackle a big running goal, being surrounded by people who support you can make a difference.
Jeremy discovered this when he thought about ending his Run Streak.
Do you have a support crew, running friends, or accountability partner to help you keep going?
Sometimes it’s stressful or inconvenient to try and keep the streak alive. But anytime he’s entertained the idea, his family gives him a boost.
“For my kids, running has been part of my life for as long as they can remember,” says Jeremy. “When I’ve thought about stopping, they’ve been there to encourage me, support me, and help me keep going. I think they take a little pride in knowing their dad runs every day. They’ve learned it’s part of my routine, and it’s important to me.”
Going the distance
Almost five years later since Jeremy started his Run Streak, he’s still going strong.
He’s ran lots of races including a long list of marathons (qualifying for the Boston Marathon), an ultramarathon, and many shorter-distance fun runs and triathlons.
Sometimes he worries about the kind of life events, or an injury, that could force him to end his Run Streak. But he doesn’t let that stop him.
“I don’t have a plan to stop,” says Jeremy. “I just try and keep looking at the next milestone. I’m probably not going to be the guy who runs every day for 50 years. And I’m OK with that.”
Start your Run Streak
Thinking about starting your own Run Streak? Here’s some advice from Jeremy:
Start small: Pick a small goal, like running every day from Thanksgiving to New Year’s or running every day for a month.
Make it social. Running can be a social activity. Join a running group online or your local running club and participate.
Create accountability. When you start making friends in the running community, set up a time to run with someone or tell other runners your goals. They’ll encourage you to keep going and motivate you to get off the couch.
Even though Nicole Richards got Jeremy started on his Run Streak, he’s become an inspiration to her and many others…
“The best part is how he inspires others, including his kids,” says Nicole. “What a great example of doing something little everyday to keep a health-minded focus! Streak on, Jeremy!”
David MooreNice work Jeremy! An amazing streak of running. Best of luck on the 5-year mark coming up soon! Incredible on the 211 days of geocaching as well. That must’ve involved a ridiculous amount of planning.