October Endure

“Perseverance: There’s never a crowd on the extra mile”.

Great quote.  Sounds like something you’d find on one of those super popular motivational posters right? Years ago, I was given that exact poster with the quote on the top and the picture of a runner in the distance at dusk.  At the time I hadn’t found much of a love for endurance sports and though I loved the quote, I don’t know if I fully understood the picture. Since that time, as the miles have started to add up, I’ve had enough opportunities to experience “extra mile” moments and the roller coaster of emotions that come with them, to appreciate at a much deeper level what the picture and poster are all about.


Sometimes the extra mile is a tranquil place, where a person can collect their thoughts and organize themselves for the journey ahead, the kind of me-time that there just never seems to be enough of in a busy life; sometimes the extra mile is a place where the triumph of new limits is reached as old boundaries become a thing of the past, moments that are typically exhausting, but still much satisfaction in breaking down a personal barrier; and sometimes the extra mile is a dark and painful place where you feel lonely and question every step, wondering how you got here and why you chose the particular path you’re on.


I guess after 31 miles a soda is allowed....just this once.
If you’re a frequent reader of the Thrive newsletter, you know that At Pro-Activity we believe a lot can be learned “on the extra mile” because ultimately growth and development (and therefore achievement) is accelerated during break-through moments. Finding new limits and sometimes, unfortunately about getting through the uncomfortable is what it takes to reach that new peak. With that in mind we constantly search out new examples of “extra-mile” moments, whether in support of our clients or squeezed from our own experiences.  

This past month for example we had one of our own (Nick Pfaff) set a new limit for himself, achieving the personal title of “ultra-marathoner” by       (After 31 miles i guess he deserves a treat!)completing the Mountain Madness 50K trail race on the same day another two(Michelle Cyphers & Wandy Bush) achieved their own ultra-status completing the 60 mile Koman 3-day walk for the cure; huge victories and amazing feats that undoubtedly will continue to push them to bigger and better futures…..pretty amazing. 

But after the euphoria of completing such impressive milestones wears off they’ll all likely be back at the planning table sketching out the components of their next adventure (if they’re not already).  

And so, as we once again view the world through the lens of human endurance, we find ourselves asking:


What ARE the limits of human potential?


Rhetorical? Seems so, but maybe not. There must be someone out there who has gotten close enough to the limit to make an educated guess right? Well….funny you should ask.


Last month we mentioned that we had gotten the chance to meet an athlete who had been further and seen more extra-mile moments than just about anyone we’ve heard of.  This was cool enough as a stand-alone conversation, but even better, after more conversations and email exchanges we were able to convince him to make the trip (following an appearance at the NYC marathon), out to our BaseCamp31 facility in Lebanon to share some of the wisdom gained from enduring what the general population might consider unthinkable.


Marshall Ulrich has an amazing story, almost unbelievable really.  He is an ordinary person who has done extraordinary things again and again.  He has climbed the highest peaks (literally, all of them), run the furthest distances (as in across the USA in record time) and experienced some of the most wretched conditions imaginable (like running through Death Valley x4) while pushing through personal limits and barriers.  He understands what it means to go it alone and also how critical a good support network is for getting through the toughest of what life throws at you.  There are few people on the planet today more qualified to talk about the “extra mile” than Marshall Ulrich.


And so…..we hope you’ll continue to compare notes with some of the folks floating around BaseCamp31 on a regular basis including our newest “guest-pert”.  Come join us on the  extra mile on Nov 7th, but REGISTER soon, this time the crowd is already forming.