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© 2019 by Ben Turner - Athlete Adventure.

Overcoming Broken Knees to Run 16 Marathons

Updated: Oct 16, 2019

Attitude is something that will decide how you get past certain obstacles. Your attitude is fuelled by many things, one of these is your interpretation of things, the way you look at them.

As Wayne Dyer said:

“If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change”.

Thus, your attitude can change. When you enter the pain cave, when you are in discomfort, no matter how extreme, when you are tested, you find out who you are. This is where the you are stripped back to the raw human being, this is where you really and truly become you.

16 National Marathons - 16 Marathons in 16 Days in 16 National Parks

It felt like someone was pushing my knee cap from behind with a screwdriver, I had a knot in my opposite calf from the resulting over compensation and my Achilles tendons were inflamed. 

Basically, I was in pain and only 7 marathons in...

Running had become hard, really hard, I could barely walk, and after gritting my teeth and clenching my fists I would force myself into a run and block out the pain by entering my 'zone'. 

My zone is an odd and inexplicable place. The blinkers narrow in and my mind focuses solely on the task at hand, one foot in front of the other, never, ever stop. I find a place deep inside that really tunes into the cliche ‘inner beast’.  I think there's some truth in , I believe that everyone has a raw primal human in them, the inner chimp, the beast, whatever its called, and this is your simple GO mechanism. This filters out all the noise and keeps you moving when you feel like you need to stop. If your body is screaming at you, it simply puts on headphones. 

I was never going to stop, I was never going to quit, and I was never going to shorten the route. Then the hail started, it was cold, my blood was trying to concentrate on vital organs and appendages were sacrificed to the cold in self preservation.  I was shaking uncontrollably, the impact of 7 Marathons in 7 Days (7 mountain trail Marathons through all seasons, 186 miles in one week) was catching up and pushing me around.  Hail would get in my eyes, freeze them shut then slowly melt in my eye sockets. 

I laughed. I roared. The inner beast had control and it was still hungry.

There was no wall, no bonk, no quitting, I was driven.  This leads me to think that the wall is entirely mental, if you win nutrition and you win the mind, you will never stop.  If you can't run, walk, if you can't walk, crawl, if you can't crawl then you damn well drag yourself by the eyelids if you need to, but you don't ever quit.