After 48 hours of gruelling activity, Zack Martyn has raised nearly $5,000 for the BC Lung Association.
The Harrison firefighter decided to create the No Fun Run this year in support of the BC Lung Association, after the COVID-19 had to cancel its annual Climb the Wall event. Over the course of 48 hours, Martyn ran 6.5km every four hours to raise money for the association.
The run was, he said, more fun than he expected.
“I really expected the running part to be brutal, and the sleep deprivation to be the worst part of all,” he said. “What I didn’t expect was how much energy, motivation and pain resistance I would get from the support of all my friends, family and community.”
The donations also helped motivate Martyn during the No Fun Run. Before the event had even gotten started, Martyn had raised more than his expected $2,000.
“The whole thing felt bigger than me, bigger than any one person,” he said, adding that the run allowed him “to taste a very tiny bit of what must’ve driven (Terry Fox) through the insane struggle he went through.”
Martyn ran the 6.5km loop around Harrison Hot Springs 12 times in 48 hours, kicking off the endeavour at 9 a.m. on Friday, Feb. 19 and ending with a final lap at 5 a.m. on Sunday, Feb. 21.
The first four runs were smooth, Martyn said. But when the first 9 p.m. run came, he had some concerns.
“I was pretty sleepy already,” he said. “Would I even wake up for 1 a.m.?”
Martyn did power through, and ended his No Fun Run with the final 5 a.m. run on Sunday, Feb. 21 with an escort from the Harrison Fire Department.
“When I eventually made it around the lagoon and up to Esplanade, my eyes grew as I saw both fire engines and what must have been 10 members from the hall cheering me on,” he said.
The crowd clapped as Martyn finished the race before sunrise..
“It was tough, but doing it for lungs I guess,” he said, out of breath at the end of his final run. “My lungs still feel good, otherwise I wouldn’t be able to do it.”
Will he do something like this again? Definitely, he said.
“Maybe not the same charity, maybe not the same challenge,” he said. “But this won’t be the last.”