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An interview with a wounded Pelican - Endurance athlete Chris Evans

Lisa Tamati

Posted on February 27 2017

An interview with a wounded Pelican - Endurance athlete Chris Evans
What got you started on this endurance mission?
Funny you ask that, we were never runners to begin especially at school. After partying and travelling a few years back, I hit a downward spiral of debauchery that lead to some of the darkest days of my life. I decided to come home early and focus on my health which lead into casual jogs. From an epiphany, I wanted to run a marathon that turned into 8 events that year and got Ant keen on running by the second event. During Dec 2015, we decided to keep running an event once a month for 2016 but for a charitable foundation just to give back. At first we had 13 events then things spiralled out of control resulting into 40... To put that into perspective, that's more than one event a fortnight... These events included multiple ultramarathons ranging from 50km to 161km, to the Kokoda Trail in PNG to even a 24hr treadmill challenge. And yes, we were on both a treadmill each for the entire 24 hours.

Why do it for charity?
There's something about gratitude and giving selflessly that's invaluable. Since we started The Wounded Pelicans project, it's given us an easy 10-fold return with friendships, health and well-being. Plus when you do these events for a cause, we've found that it's helped us push through the adversarial moments in tough races because you don't want to let the team down. 

What have learnt about yourself on this journey?
A great deal. Knowing that taking on these insane distances are subliminally increasing my mental and emotional strength. This helps overcome adversity because I know I've dealt with tougher moments from running. It's also taught me about perspective which part of my everyday philosophy on pushing my limits and thinking in other people's shoes.

It's damn hard so why do you do it?
For two reasons. One to see how far I can break my body and 2, to help people along the way with this endurance project by raising funds and awareness. To be known as endurance runners who helped others in need when I die would be the ultimate goal.

What has it meant to your friendship with Ant's?
I've known Ant for 10 years now and our friendship has grown into a great bond since we first met at school. We have a track record from partying and travelling together prior to running however, running a ton of endurance events together has created a stronger bond as we've gone through tough moments together. There's a science behind good friendships that are cultivated through adversity. When you gone through so much together.

What is the plan this year?
We're tackling a massive project this year called 'The BIG 10' which will entail us to take on 10 extreme events - 1 per month from March to December and each event will be dedicated to a different cause of youth. Our first event will be a 24hr run on March 11-12 around a 400m track here on the Gold Coast for the family of Craig Percival who recently passed away from a heart attack. Craig was known for his astonishing endurance efforts in the community raising $80k+ for wheelchair bound children. This one is to pay it forward because is family would be struggling losing their father and amazing role model. Some of the other events of The BIG 10 include Mt Everest, an Ironman Triathlon and more. 

How to stay in touch with The Wounded Pelicans:
Instagram - https://www.instagram.com/thewoundedpelicans/
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/thewoundedpelicans/
Website/ blog - http://thewoundedpelicans.com/
YouTube - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCOXNqcdnQg5cU82zJrFeanA

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