The 24 Hour Run Experience: Building Characteristics of Success One Step at a Time
SIZE: 6 x 9
PAGE COUNT: 128
The 24 Hour Challenge Run has changed how I teach, increased the attitude and motivation of my students, and received unbelievable support from the parents. It has had a positive impact on the overall climate of the school since its beginning in 1999.
The 24 Hour Run Experience will inspire you with the story of one school’s challenge to motivate students to do the impossible through physical education. This book includes the experiences leading up to the 24 Hour Run, hour by hour observations and reflections, how the event wraps up, and inspirational quotes that tell the story. The journey and the experiences are powerful—joyful and heartbreaking, but also successful. The ripple effect of the 24 Hour Run will continue for a long time. It encourages educators and individuals to achieve something greater than they thought possible. First, to create an understanding of students’ potential and the need to challenge them. Second, how success at something difficult can be a rewarding motivation to achieve more. Success is a powerful motivator. Learning how to be successful and putting it into practice repeatedly can be life changing.
“The 24 Hour Run shows that finding motivation and passion in your life is the key to success. Through Fred’s journey of pulling off this amazing event, he pushes his own limits and brings the entire community along with him.”
—Clint Jones, 2 Time Olympian and 2014 Olympic Head Coach (ski jumping), Team Director for USA Nordic Sport
“Fred Kaiser offers a unique opportunity for students to learn the benefits of setting and achieving personal goals, working as part of a team, abiding by the rules, and accomplishing something they never thought was possible.”
—William T. Jebb, Business Entrepreneur, former U.S. Navy UDT/SEAL Officer
“Fred Kaiser’s sense of passion has created a ripple effect of life changing experiences for the students, the staff, and their community. There is something of value in this book for everyone.”
—Dan Creely Jr., TEAM Conference, Professor Emeritus, Northeastern Illinois University
“As a teacher, if you can do something that has a life-impacting affect on a large group of students, you are doing something right. I found the book inspirational and it got me thinking about how I could try to do something similar.”
—Tedd Markos, Physical Education Department Chair, Spark Academy, Lawrence, Massachusetts
“The best example of how students will rise to the expectations of their teachers! Not only did Mr. Kaiser’s students reach and exceed his expectations, so did his school and community. The entire time I was reading it, I was thinking how we could try it here.”
—Brett Fuller, 2014-2016 Wisconsin Health and Physical Education President
“This inspiring book is a must read. Fred’s enthusiasm for his work is obvious as he explains how this experience changes the lives of the staff and students, as well as parents who watch their children grow into young adults.”
—Steve Palmiter, Adventure/Health/Physical Education Teacher, Robert M. LaFollette H.S., Madison, Wisconsin
Excerpt from the Book
The Final Lap
Everyone is watching the clock tick down the final minutes and seconds of the 24 Hour Run, but it’s not over yet. The area is suddenly more crowded than ever as fellow students, entire families, and friends come to see the last few minutes of the event and the final lap. The last of the runners are on the track, and we are trying to figure out who is going to be the last runner to finish. Once we are sure who it is, I get on the bullhorn and summon all runners to the exchange zone. Students flank either side, leaving the center lanes open. As the last runner heads toward me on his/her final lap, everyone is cheering and the energy is at its peak. It’s the gun lap.
The final lap is the same every year, but it was the first year that brought everyone to tears. The sight was unbelievable. By luck, the last runner was Chris, an 8th grade student. He was about to start his final lap on the final minute of the event. He ran up to me, and I handed him the school flag. Without breaking stride, he accepted. I fired the pistol to signify the final lap. Exhausted, every runner gathered up the strength for one more lap. Some could barely move. A jog seemed impossible, but they didn’t quit. Chris was leading the pack at a slow pace but no one passed. He would lead everyone one final time around the track. The wave of colored shirts running as a group to finish their journey together is a fantastic sight any year, but there was a significant difference that first year. Chris was not the most popular student in school. In fact, he was probably the most picked on. He was a small, skinny, non-athletic, socially-awkward, nice, intelligent, middle-school student. To my knowledge he was never recognized for anything in school and was very quiet. Not today. Not this time. He was not lost in the crowd. This was his time to shine, to finish his eighth-grade year, it was perfect. Parents were running across the field and along the track to get photos of the crowd and cheer everyone to the finish. His parents were on the sideline, crying, as he brought everyone in across the finish line. Other parents were caught up in the emotion of this powerful ending to an exhausting and exhilarating journey. Right then, he was the most popular. He was the leader, and was honored for it. This could not have happened to a better person, at a better time, and it set a precedent and mood for the years following.
We had taken what was considered “Impossible” by so many and changed it to “I’m/Possible!” Since then, we’ve made it possible for all to see what the students are capable of achieving. Each year the last lap has its own stories to tell, but that first year was incredibly special for all involved.
Table of Contents
Why We Teach
Training & Log Sheets
Planning & Organization
Parent & Alumni Teams
The Day Of. . .
3:00 PM The Starting Gun – Peace Fire
4:00 PM Tent City – Cell Phones
5:00 PM You’re on Your Own
6:00 PM Goals
7:00 PM Fire Pits – Fundraiser
8:00 PM Team Leaders
9:00 PM I’m Afraid of the Dark
10:00 PM Confidence – Eating Right
11:00 PM Blisters – Determination to Stand
12:00 AM Curious Spectators
1:00 AM Parent Volunteers
2:00 AM The Night Sky – June Bugs – We Can’t Find. . .
3:00 AM Halfway Done – Passion – Everything’s Wet
4:00 AM Concentrate – Phone Home – First Light
5:00 AM Sleepwalking – Stomach Aches – A Time to Shine
6:00 AM Sleep Deprivation – Hit the Showers
7:00 AM They Are Still Running
8:00 AM Food Is Awesome – Head Lice
9:00 AM We have a Visitor – 50 Miles – Follow the Rules
10:00 AM You’re Doing Great
11:00 AM Reflections
12:00 PM Will I Make My Goal?
1:00 PM Success Is Within Reach
2:00 PM Disability or Ability
3:00 PM The Final Lap
Final Speech & Debriefing
About the Author