Could you run or walk at least 1 mile every day for a year? If you can, then you could be MAD!
CSC members Mike Jackson & Christina Lawrence have devised a great challenge to motivate you to keep fit, active, and healthy, throughout the year – The ‘Mile a Day’ (MAD) Challenge
It’s really simple – Run, walk or crawl, at least one continuous dedicated mile, every day, for a year. Record your daily run or walk in an activity tracker (Strava, Fitbit, Garmin, Apple Workouts etc) or keep a note on a piece of paper. If you don’t already have an activity tracker you can download and use Strava for free on your smartphone and use this to record and track your distance each day. This challenge can be undertaken by almost anyone, no matter what your age fitness or ability, so why not give it a go!
- Run or walk (at least) 1 mile every day, for a year.
- Record your run or walk each day (Smartphone / Strava / Pen & Paper)
- No you can’t double up one day and pretend it counts for tomorrow or yesterday. It’s an EVERYDAY challenge.
- No, cycling doesn’t count.
- No, adding up your walk round the shops, garden, or or house doesn’t count.
- No, a round of golf doesn’t count.
- Yes, if it’s snowing / raining / there’s bad weather you still have go out.
- Yes, longer (more than a mile) walks, hikes, or runs count as your mile a day.
- Yes you can do it on a treadmill (but it’s not as much fun).
- Yes you will have to go out for 365 consecutive days, come rain or shine.
Many of us started the MAD challenge on the 1st January, with the aim of finishing on 31st December, but you can of course start the challenge yourself at any time of year you want, you just have to make sure you do it every day for the next 365 days.
Is it Easy?
Yes, anyone can take on this challenge no matter what your age, fitness, or ability and it is quite simple to run or walk a mile – you can walk a mile in 15-20 minutes or run it in around 10 minutes. Most of the time you can fit in your mile a day quite easily, especially if you make it part of your regular daily routine. Do it before work, on the way to work (maybe get off the bus/train/tube a stop early and run/walk the rest of the way), at lunchtime, or at the end of the day, or leave the car behind and walk/run to your destination. We currently have a number of people doing the MAD challenge who previously did not walk further than their front door to the car, but who are now proudly doing a mile every day, and feeling much better for it.
Is it Hard?
Yes! There will be those odd days were the weather is foul, you are busy/don’t have time, feeling lazy, forget and remember late at night, or you might be away from home with family or friends or on holiday. This is when it gets tricky to fit your mile in, and sometimes you simply have to be creative – we have had people running in their business suit during a quick break at work, people doing laps around car parks, airport terminals or cruise ships to reach a mile, or out in the darkness at night with a torch. There hopefully will not be too many of these occasions, but this is what makes it a challenge, and an achievement when you complete it.
What’s This About a Bus?
Those who miss a day, or fail the challenge, are known to be ‘on the bus’ home. No one wants to be on that bus, so stay motivated, and do your daily mile! Once you get a little way into the the challenge you will find that you are invested in it, and having put in so much hard work to do it every day, you won’t want to have all that be for nothing by not doing your daily mile. There will of course be those who are unfortunately forced onto the bus by an injury, medical reasons, or other unexpected circumstances. If this happens, once you are back in a position to try again, you will need to start back at day 1 and begin ticking off the 365 days again.
One of our members who has previously completed a similar challenge has shared some helpful tips based on her own experience doing it:
- Set an alarm on your phone for the evening, or for whatever time you’re comfortable with going out for a run/walk, because there will be days when you forget and that alarm will be your saviour! If you’ve already done your mile, you can just smugly turn that alarm off, but I can guarantee you’ll need it! Mine is set for 8pm each day.
- Log your runs. Apps like Strava, Garmin, Apple Health etc will work fine and will help you keep track of how you’re doing. And again, there will be days when you can’t remember if you’ve been out that day – sounds silly, but all the days merge into one! It’s also really cool to see your stats at the end of the year to see how far you’ve run/walked and the time / calories etc
- Not every run/walk will need full exercise gear – it’s quite liberating to just pop out in your jeans… think I even did one in my pyjamas.
- Find a regular route at home or work that you know is at least 1 mile. There might be a day where you forget your watch / phone and you don’t want to be guessing your distance!
- And lastly, go into it believing that you’re going to complete the challenge. You can do it, we’re all in the same boat, share your runs/walks every day, or get sponsorship if it’ll help. Accountability from doing this together with others will help you so much, so encourage a friend or two to join in and do the challenge with you.
When the MAD challenge was first announced at the start of 2023 we had around 40-50 people taking part in and around Tebworth/Wingfield, many of which are also CSC members. While a few have had to drop out for various reasons, most are still going strong. You will find great comradery with all those doing it, with everyone willing to help and support each other, providing encouragement, and sharing their experiences. There is a dedicated Facebook group and also a Strava group for those who are taking part which you are welcome to join. CSC also arrange regular group walks and Parkrun meetings which provide opportunities to do you mile a day in a different environment to your usual routine. CSC are also happy to provide help and support to anyone thinking of taking up the challenge, or needing help to complete it. You can contact the club or any of the committee members below who are all currently MAD.