4 miles, every 4 hours, for 48 hours.
The David Goggins 4x4x48 challenge is no easy feat, but this city continues to boast of warriors who can achieve the seemingly impossible. Three men were able to successfully achieve this feat in the spirit of the Dubai Fitness Challenge. If you need some fitspo to keep it going, this is it!
Athletes Anwar El Khatib and Issa Azar set out to conquer the 4x4x48 in different locations around Dubai. They also extended the challenge to their triathlon training group- The Flying Dutchman, and inspired another teammate- Matthew Benson, to join them too!
From two members to three, the athletes were ready to succeed. They were also joined by other teammates and community members for a few runs.
Sometimes in the scorching 2 pm heat or in the middle of the night at 2 am…the trio just kept going!
The trio had to overcome several obstacles to achieve this feat
From lack of sleep to maintaining consistent physical exertion, there are several difficulties when you attempt a challenge like this, but the dream team were hustling through it all. Due to a bike crash and subsequent damage to the collar bone, Anwar had not done any activities for over 6 months.
That is until he was approached by Issa with the 4x4x48 challenge.
Issa talks about how despite the heat, he ran his fastest splits when the mercury was at its highest
What was surprising that the last two miles of the last two runs – both in Dubai’s hot daytime, I had the fastest splits of the whole challenge. So as cliché as it sounds, the mind is stronger than the body!
He admits that there were a few moments of vulnerability, but it was the team that kept him going!
Throughout the challenge, I had some moments where I realized that there was no need to prove anything to myself. Yet, it was too late, as I was already committed to Anwar and another team member, Matt, who decided to join the challenge willingly after running the first run and I just couldn’t stop!
Against all odds, the team were able to cover 77.3 kilometres (48 miles) in 48 hours…that’s basically 2 marathons!
The team credits the support they received from the community for their success.
“It was great to join Issa and Anwar on this exciting challenge, and I loved the way that the community supported us throughout the whole event, even coming out to cheer us on in the middle of the night!” – Matthew Benson
For Anwar, this experience has changed his perception of what it means to be strong.
I now know what being strong means. It’s not only about your physical or mental strength, it’s about who surrounds you and who is there for you.