Henry is a 27 year-old native of London, England who now lives in Toronto. He manages to lead a very active lifestyle while working as the Director of Customer Care at the start-up, League. Henry suffered a knee injury that prevented him from running for a while, which was upsetting for him as he had a passion and loved running! He drew inspiration from other runners and despite his past injuries, decided to set a consecutive challenge of his own. His goal was to run 10 kilometres per day for 31 days, which then turned into a consecutive running streak of 101 days – a truly incredible feat. He overcame several obstacles during the 101 days including a virus that almost prevented him from completing it – yet, he still persevered. I’m excited to share Henry’s story on how his consecutive running challenge and how it changed his life for the better.
What made you decide to start your consecutive running challenge, how many kilometres did you choose to run, and why?
2 years before my challenge, I had seen through Instagram that an acquaintance had done a 31x10km consecutive running challenge – it a weird way it had actually upset me because I was not able to do back to back runs, despite loving to run. In around 2011, a repetitive knee injury had stopped me from running and I had taken years off. I ran a couple of marathons that year so it wasn’t like I wasn’t able to run at all, but it felt unfair to me that this person who was not even really a casual runner was able to do something so impressive while I couldn’t even run 2 5ks in a row! I knew that it was something I wanted to do in the future.
I was running at max 50 miles a month, and had been doing that for the last couple of years. I was probably averaging around 30-40 miles a month, so pretty low mileage.
Did you have any self-doubts? If so, what were they?
I doubted that I would be able to do it at all! I was really just taking it day by day…for the first 5 days it hurt and then after that I was either used to it or it stopped hurting and became more logistically difficult! However, around day 89 I got the campylobacter virus which lasted for 10 days and it was almost impossible to hit my goal of 100. I was so sick that I was off work during that time but I would wait until the end of the day to run…near the start of that period I was running with a migraine, cold fever and sweats and it was really mentally taxing and definitely not good for me.
How did the challenge impact your life?
I realized that the hardest part of a personal challenge like this is mental and that my knee is fully healthy! I lost around 20lbs during the period I was running, but I was also on a keto diet so I’m not sure how much of it came from running. I set my 10km PB during the stretch (39:51) and I felt much more energetic every single day – much more driven at work.
Are there any other areas of your life that improved after the challenge was complete?
I really feel like I was much more motivated in life before and after the challenge! I had always been an after work runner but doing the challenge and still maintaining a social life meant I entered a mode of running before work everyday, which was a big change in lifestyle for me. I really enjoyed it – even after completing the challenge I’m waking up much earlier now.
Aside from running, Henry enjoys flying his drone, sour beers and technology! You can find him on Instagram and follow his running @henry.j.hayes. Congrats Henry on the completion of your amazing and very inspiring consecutive running challenge! 🙂
Ready to begin your own consecutive running challenge? Sign-up for your RUN 30 | Consecutive Running Challenge here.