The past year has been packed with virtual and at-home challenges for runners, and one of the more popular events has been the Goggins Challenge. Also known as the 4x4x48 Challenge, this event involves running four miles (6.4K) every four hours for 48 hours, totalling 48 miles (77K) run in two days. Sports Illustrated‘s and Citius Mag‘s Chris Chavez helped organize the most recent Goggins Challenge, running the ultrarunning event alongside several other runners, including Zac Clark, the latest winner of The Bachelorette. The run doubled as a fundraiser for the Release Recovery Foundation, a nonprofit co-founded by Clark that supports people dealing with mental health struggles and addiction, and so far they have raised more than US$60,000 (CAN$75,000).
A weekend of pushing outside our comfort zone, taking a big leap forward & giving service for those who need it
— Chris Chavez (@ChrisChavez) April 13, 2021
Chavez and Clark are both avid runners. They have each completed multiple marathons, but neither had ever tackled an event like the Goggins Challenge. The pair trained together for this run for a while, and they announced that they would attempt it in March after posting a picture from a run with none other than Malcolm Gladwell.
Along with seven other runners who completed the 48-mile challenge, Chavez and Clark began the event on Friday afternoon. The group ran in New York City, covering the same four-mile loop every four hours. While there were only nine runners who ran the entire thing, many other people joined Chavez, Clark and co. for each of the 12 four-mile legs of the event. They documented their progress on social media throughout the run, updating their followers each step of the way.
Rippin through NYC this weekend running 48 miles in 48 hours. Leaving from Equinox Hotel (Hudson Yards) every four hours starting at 3 PM today. Come chill. pic.twitter.com/bqelnCKOGH
— Zac Clark (@zacwclark) April 9, 2021
Social media is the key to the event’s success, as Chavez and Clark have a combined 687,000 followers on Instagram, plus another 39,000 on Twitter. During the run, Clark took to Twitter to express his gratitude for all of the people who came out to run with the group and show their support for the Release Recovery Foundation. “The entire world could take some notes from the NYC Running Community,” he tweeted. “Incredible group of humans.”
Clark, who has struggled with addiction himself, founded the Release Recovery Foundation to support others enduring similar battles to his. The foundation raises funds to deliver scholarship to these individuals, and the Goggins Challenge has added $60,000 to that haul from donations so far. In addition to those general fundraising efforts, David Goggins himself, the creator of the 4x4x48 Challenge, donated $20,000 to Release Recovery, according to a tweet from Chavez on Tuesday, bringing the total to US$80,000 (CAN$100,000).
After completing the challenge, Chavez tweeted his thanks to Clark, writing, “Way to bring us all together and push us beyond our perceived limits with some meaningful miles.” Next up for Chavez is a mile race against Gladwell in May, although no date has been made public yet.
The Release Recovery Foundation fundraiser is still live, and anyone looking to donate can do so here.