JACKSONVILLE BEACH – Thousands of people showed up at Jacksonville Beach for the 5th Annual Never Quit Never Event which is designed to challenge participants at whatever athletic level they are at in their lives.
Organizers say once again, record crowds showed up to give it all they've got.
"It's an event focused around faith and wellness, family, a healthy lifestyle, and our Armed Forces. This years event attracted more than 7000 people," said Doug Alred who is the race organizer.
Organizers say with a never quit attitude participants can overcome all obstacles and achieve their goals.
"It's a celebration of never quitting if that is what you want to do. The organizer here Eric Petroni, his father died of a stroke and the last thing he said before he died to his son was never quit so that was the birth of this. So over the past five years this has just turned into a massive event," said Alred.
There are a number of challenges planned throughout the day including a one mile fun run, an ocean swim, pull ups and crawl exercises, relays, and a warrior challenge with situps and pull ups.
Organizers say there is something for practically everyone interested in staying fit, and refusing to give up.
"This is the second time we've taken part in this event and each year it gets bigger and bigger," said Harold Lawrence who ran 3.5 miles pushing his son who suffers from a brain injury on a specially fitted bike.
"Today's run has special meaning. This is our second year and I asked my son. Who do you want to run for? And he said I want to run for God and for my mom, and that's why we are here," said Lawrence.
Perhaps the most grueling competition is the Trident according to organizers because it pushes athletes to their limits. First, in a 500 meter ocean swim, a down and dirty in the sand crawl under low ropes, followed by a pull up and sit up challenge.
"The whole time in the back of my mind I'm like one more time, you can do it, one more repetition. I can't give up, and that's what this is all about, never quitting and in the back of my mind I say to myself I'm never quitting in all things in life," said Micah Barnes who participated in several events.
Organizers say the mission of Never Quit is a avoid brain bleeds, strokes, and heart disease through healthy lifestyle choices while encouraging everyone to live life to the fullest.