What is the “24 hours of Heroes” event?
The 24 hours of Heroes event started in 2016 with Bob, an Ornge Helicopter paramedic and Gord, Canadian Forces Veteran raising some money for Wounded Warriors of Canada- a charity that aids Veterans and First Responders suffering from PTSD. Both men are active CrossFit athletes and thought that would be a good way to get the gym community on board with their efforts. The guys gathered 24 “hero” workouts- CrossFit style workouts that are written and performed to honour fallen service men and women. They are typically long and gruelling workouts, meant to make you really uncomfortable, but also to remind you of their ultimate sacrifice for our freedom and safety.
To participate, you can “pay to play” and make a donation per workout, you can donate a prize through your business or service, or, you could have your friends and family sponsor you to complete several workouts, perhaps even our newest event, the overnight “Ruck March”
The evolution of events
Starting on November 10th 2016 and ending with “Murph” on November 11th, Bob and Gord completed 12 workouts each, alternating for a full 24 hours. The result was an overwhelming amount of awareness and money raised, but also, soul crushing injuries…. They were going to need some help if they wanted to keep this thing going.
2017 saw a change in format- 18 total “Hero” workouts with an effort to include more Canadians as well as an overnight “Ruck March” to pass the torch between one host facility (MVMT Strength) to the other (Hybrid Fitness) The guys chose 6 workouts each to personally perform, and joined in on the overnight march. During the march we held post at the Cenotaph downtown, performed some team building activities (Capture the Flag at 2am in Gibbons Park!), Bob led some survival education and we finished off with a 5km buddy carry. The end result was even more funds raised, the team was able to be a part of the community conversation in the gyms and even walk afterwards… BONUS!
2018 promises even more positive changes. One of our goals is to expand the event and provide other gyms nationwide with a template to run their own event simultaneously. Another is to have strictly Canadian content, that is to have all of the workouts honour fallen Canadian Service Men and Women.
We are also hosting monthly hero workouts leading up to the main event as a way to raise startup funds for this year’s event- keep your eyes on the facebook and instagram page to get information about those.
We have quickly realized the need for greater awareness surrounding PTSD as well as access to resources for those suffering from this often debilitating condition. We want to continue to make this event bigger and better, but we can’t do it alone, it’s getting bigger than the three of us and our amazing families and we need your help. If you are interested in helping out with this year’s event, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org