Friday, July 15, 2016

Birthday 49 Challenge 5: Cross Country Team Effort

The 2016 Fundraiser website: We passed $14K today! Read more about the charities here

Remember back to that post from oh so long ago - yesterday? The one where I wrote about 2016 miles in 2016? Well, the company behind that, Running the Edge, unveiled a new gauntlet a few weeks ago, and it kicked off on July 4. But instead of tackling this alone, I teamed up with 5 others from Oculus to show our determination and stamina.

The goal is a 3,521 virtual run across the US from the Golden Gate Bridge to the National Mall in Washington DC. While the “Amerithon Challenge” has no official time maximum, the guidelines strongly suggest to complete the miles within a year. Our team, Stephanie, Hala, Andrew, Ruben, Matt and me decided we would do this in just 6 months.

Matt, Laird and Andrew at a recent Facebook race
This is not a strictly a running event. Everything can count - bike rides, hikes, swims, elliptical machines and even walks. So, now nearly two weeks into the event, I can happily report that we are well on our way with over 250 miles in 12 days. Our projected finish is December 14 - just 5 months from today.

Hala and Ruben
What is so much fun about this is that we are doing it as a team. We get notifications when any of us finishes an activity and then we give kudos on Strava and likes on MapMyRun. In fact, I would say that all of the running I have challenged myself to do this week has been greatly enhanced by these social platforms. Besides tracking my data and giving analysis, the sites connect me to friends so i can see their successes and send accolades and messages. Strava includes an option to add photos, and I find myself looking for opportunities to get shots to enhance my logged workout and then I look to see what other people posted. Of course, the six of us work for the biggest social media company in the world, but for some reason this is different and does not feel like work.

Stephanie and Laird in the Weifang China Gym at 6 am!
I think it also helps the everyone on our team went through the Rift launch with many of us spending time in China together including at the gyms of our numerous hotels around Asia. It’s great to be teamed up again on something just for us.

So when I run those 49 races or finish my 50 state quest or cross 2,016 miles, I know my running/biking/swimming friends will all be cheering me on even if they are not present to see the actual finish line. And I will do the same for them on their goals.

And likewise, we’re all ensuring The Rifters (as we have fashioned ourselves) will get those 3,521 virtual miles from SF to DC. As we say at Oculus: “Team Effort!”

Go Rifters!!!

Hala and Laird Guarantee Victory!