Peter first hired me in 1997 because he wanted to qualify for the Boston marathon. Back then he wasn’t running much, perhaps 30-50kms a week, and followed a traditional approach to training by running hills, some intervals, and long runs on the weekends. We began by testing his aerobic threshold, defining his training zones, and setting up a plan to increase his volume and build his base.
I explained the value of training aerobically along with the need to increase his volume and decrease his weight. We slowly cranked up his mileage to over 100kms a week and went to work on nutrition by reducing his sugar consumption. Peter’s weight came down, his aerobic speed greatly improved, and a year later he qualified for Boston. His marathon times fell by over half an hour and, in short, he accomplished his goal to run the marathon most runners set as their ultimate goal - and he did it twice!
Since then running has become a lifestyle and a personal passion. With a family of four and a busy practice as a pediatrician, he fits his runs in during the early morning hours around Glenmore reservoir. He often comments on the beauty of the sunrise - after all, he sees it every single day! If you’re out there between the hours of 5-7am you’ll see him on the paths.
Peter has gone on to complete 83 career marathons and is well on his way to achieving his goal of 100 marathons by age 60. But that’s not the whole story…
In fact, I think his latest quest is truly remarkable. An interesting transformation occurred a few years ago: Peter is working on his first book examining the value of consistency. He’s the kind of guy that walks the talk. Now, to remain authentic to his advice, on December 16, 2009 he started a running streak. No, he doesn’t run naked through the streets of Calgary at 5am; he simply commits to run every day. That’s a running streak! Peter is now listed on the international running streakers’ association web page as one of the select few that run every day.
What this means is that for almost three years straight he’s run every single day. Yes, every single day, he hasn’t missed a single step. On a few occasions when a busy day has slipped by and his wife has woken him up from a slumber on the couch at 10pm, he’s donned his running gear, leashed up his dog, and headed out for his daily jaunt - now that’s commitment! Why you ask? Peter has a passion for living life large and going after his goals. He wants to inspire others through action and show that dreams can be achieved. He’s also living proof that you can be active every day of your life.
In his own words:
“I can honestly say that a huge part of these accomplishments are due to Grant’s philosophy of Effortless Exercise, it has helped me stay injury-free. Every run has been a joyful experience, especially when one follows the philosophy of harmonizing ones breathing and mind with one's body rhythms and moods, rather than making each workout a "killer" event.
“Over the years, as I am getting older I also appreciated the advice Grant gave me regarding lowering your carbohydrate consumption to stay lean. Even with 90-100kms of running per week I can gain weight if I do not carefully monitor my carbohydrates and consume foods with higher glycemic intakes. Go figure!”
So if you have a chance to get out onto the paths around Glenmore reservoir between the hours of 5-7am there’s a very strong chance you’ll bump into Peter celebrating life by adding to his 1100 day of consecutive running, witnessing the sunrise, and basically walking (in this case running) the talk! Forest Gump move over, you have serious competition!