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Athlete of the Day

Emmannuel Deyrieux from Québec

May 31st, 2020

There is a French proverb that says “Paris was not done in a day!” You don’t become a marathon runner overnight.

Did you walk, jog or run this challenge?

The greatest portion of this challenge was done on my treadmill, maybe 850KM, at a fast speed at 8KM/H.
The rest was done during beautiful walks in the forest with Onyx, my Whippet Greyhound.

How did you start running and why?

I am not a runner, but I am a “speed walker.”
When I was young, I joined the best walkers in the world: the participants of the Legendary Paris-Colmar! This consisted of a 500KM walking challenge in 70 hours, with only 4 hours of rest. I loved seeing these athletes pass by my house, and little by little, I started to walk too. The best part of my career was that I was a part of an amazing support team, that included one of the walkers, who finished 4th in this legendary race.
Now I walk for fun, and to raise money for a 24-hour treadmill walking challenge. I had to complete this 2nd challenge (the first was in 2018) in early April, but Covid-19 decided otherwise, so I will aim to finish it this fall.

How often do you walk or run?

Normally, I get out three times a week and aim for 10-15KM per session.
In preparation for my challenges, I was training 5 times per week on my treadmill. My first session in 2020 was to walk a marathon on my treadmill. It took me 5 hours and 36 minutes 🙂
I don’t like rain or wind, and I usually only workout on a treadmill.

I do love outdoor competitions at times! It is nice to be surrounded by a lot of different people.

What was your greatest obstacle while aiming to reach 1000KM?

I had no major obstacles during this challenge so far. I prepared my 24-hour schedule early, so my goal was established early and the motivation was there.

How do you stay motivated and find the time to walk and run?

When I am on my treadmill, I listen to my music and I watch a movie … I get a little exhilarated, no need to control my pace with the treadmill. I just have to follow the rhythm. I got used to walking long distances at 8KM/Hour. It’s my routine.

I work full time, I have two children, but training really feels good, not just physically! After each session, I’m happy to have done it.
“Yes we can”, said President Obama!

Sometimes I have to find the will to climb on the treadmill at 8 p.m. so that I can walk until 10 p.m. or 11 p.m. Sometimes, the meal has been too big and the stomach is still full. Sometimes, I feel heavy legs and sometimes I would rather crash on the sofa!

With a little kick in the ass, I start and I have no regrets!

What advice would you give someone to stay focused on reaching 1000KM in 2020?

I participated in many races in my life. (I began with 5KM races, then did some 10KM, then Half Marathons)

I’ll run my first 42K in September (if CoVid-19 does not prevent me).

These races motivate me to improve and get stronger, even though I know I will never do the Olympics.

I admire people who run 20 or 30K per day. When I started to train again, after years of doing nothing, an hour every morning was a lot! Little by little, I can increase the distance, the duration and the speed. I’m a completely normal guy, so if I can do it, you can too!

Congrats to everyone, from British Columbia to Prince Edward Island, who crisscross the roads, trails, and tracks to stay in shape and achieve YOUR OWN challenge!

And thanks to A Great Canadian Running Challenge for bringing us all together 🙂

Great work Emmannuel and thank you for sharing a part of your story with us! We wish you the best of luck in reaching your 2020 goals!

You can follow Emmannuel’s progress on the new Leaderboard, and cheer him on as he aims for 3000KM in 2020!

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