Georges Gonzalez and Jonathan Rushnak admit they were unlikely candidates to take on this life-changing challenge, but made magic together in their lifetime achievement this past January, as they completed their 50th marathon across 50 states in the U.S.! This began as a pipe dream 7 years ago, and thousands of miles ago (on feet and in the air traveling!).
In this episode, we spend a great deal of time discussing the HOW and WHY behind such an attempt, including the communities that supported them, and the contribution it has made to their lives overall. They also give us their "tops lists" for unique marathons, marathons harboring hidden gems of culture, most challenging marathons, and most surprising, among others!
You may be surprised by the "lessons learned" portion of our talk as well, which includes tips and tricks for the 50 states challenge, but also planning and destination races in general. Some of the resources we discuss are: the 50 states club Facebook Group, the official entry process (only after completing 10 races), the process they went through deciding which marathons to run, and how to organize them around a yearly calendar to not go crazy or suffer injury.
You can hear the joy and gratitude in their voices, and at times the emotions that accompany a heart-changing race such as the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, DC. While such a challenge is not for the faint of heart, it should also not be mistaken to be only for an "elite" or expert runners experience, as they admit at the beginning of it (at least Georges) did not even consider himself marathon material and had to be talked into his first. A decade ago, he would quip "I am not a runner", and now has much evidence to the contrary...
To learn more about each marathon on their list and explore what each has to offer (and IF they are being run during the ongoing pandemic, restrictions, etc.) you will have to visit their websites! Explore all of their marathons in a list at our website: www.runninganthropologist.com
You can also explore Georges and Jonathan's recommended 50 States facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/74142960795/
Note: There is also a Half Marathon 50 States challenge group! That being said, in order to join/apply for either, see rules or officially become a member of the 50 States Marathon Club, you'll have to go to the 50 States Marathon Club website: http://www.50statesmarathonclub.com
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