In Italy, US Navy wife running to break record for number of consecutive marathons


(WAVY) — While the rest of the world might be at rest during the COVID-19 pandemic, a U.S. Navy family is running to break a world record.

Alyssa Clark is an ultra-marathon runner and has lived with her husband, Lt. Codi Clark, in the Avellino province in Italy for two years.

Italy, which was hit hard by coronavirus, implemented strict restrictions for those living in the country. Since the marathons Alyssa Clark was training for were canceled, she decided to do something else.

“I was looking for a new challenge. Somehow it got into my head that it would be fun to run a marathon every day until we could run outside,” she said.

As of Monday, that was 56 days ago, and Alyssa Clark is aiming for breaking the world record which is 60 days, according to Guinness World Records.

“It’s been really exciting,” Alyssa Clark said about running. “I’ve never had a day where I didn’t think I could do it. I just thought ‘Another day? Okay, I’ll do it,'” she said

At first, Alyssa Clark started out running on her treadmill inside the couple’s home.

“It has its benefits and hardships,” she said. “It’s boring, but I watched a lot of Netflix and had my snacks right there.”

Alyssa Clark says her husband and their cats would also visit her while running on the treadmill. He says what she’s doing is amazing and impressive.

“I’ve seen her do a lot of fantastic things through the last few years we’ve been together. Some of the ultra races she’s done, 100 miles, 100 miles-plus, stag races. She’s beaten some pretty impressive athletes with some big-name athletes,” Codi Clark said.

The couple is getting ready to move from Italy back to the United States. Alyssa Clark says she’s already planned out how she will still get her miles in each day while the family relocates to Panama City, Florida.

They were looking forward to spending their last couple of months in Italy visiting the mountains but they say they’re fortunate they had a great home, great friends, and resources during the pandemic, unlike some others in their community.

“It was difficult to see the hardship we saw in our community, especially in the small mountain village we lived in. We were able to provide food,” Codi Clark said.

It’s strength through giving and grind that the Clarks hope can inspire others to keep going through their own times of difficulty.

“No matter how hard it gets, you can keep putting one step in front of the other and that’s been my goal, to inspire and put out some hope in this time that’s been pretty difficult,” she said.

Alyssa Clark is documenting her journey on her Instagram page. She says she will run to set the record at 75 consecutive days.

You can also follow her on Garmin or Strava.

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