The Marathon des Sables, probably the toughest footrace on earth

The Marathon des Sables, probably the toughest footrace on earth

“You can’t feel the sweat dripping down your face because it’s evaporating in the baking heat. Your lungs feel parched. Today’s temperature is over 50 degrees centigrade”  Held in Morocco each year, the Marathon des Sables (MdS) bills itself as the “toughest footrace on Earth.” Participants cover 251 km over the course of six days. During this time, they must traverse the Sahara desert, crossing dunes, mountains, sand, and storms., The MdS is a stage race meaning competitors stop each day and rest. The twist, however, is that they must also carry all of their own supplies—save a small ration of water given out each day—including food, clothing, a sleeping bag, and other items. The first MdS The marathon was the brainchild of French Patrick Bauer who in 1984 traversed the Sahara desert on foot and alone. He covered the 350 km in 12 days without encountering a single oasis or desert community along the way. Two years later in 1986 the first Marathon des Sables was run. 23 runners participated in the race. Over 1.000 runners from all over the world The race is now in its 28th consecutive year and continues to grow in popularity every edition with over 1.000 participants. Places are much sought after, but those who do make it to the start line are richly rewarded. Under the scorching Moroccan sun, life-long friendships are fostered through a shared experience of unforgettable days spent running across saltpans, up desert-mountains, through ruined towns and through the occasional sand storm. A life time experience When you complete the final stage of the Marathon des Sables, you will...
Running a Marathon at the North Pole

Running a Marathon at the North Pole

It might sound crazy but there are only few places in the world where marathonians wouldn´t run 42,195km and the North Pole is not one of them. Summary facts about the Noth Pole Marathon: The only certified marathon that is run entirely ‘on’ water, the frozen water of the Arctic Ocean Recognized by Guinness World Records as the northernmost marathon on earth Dubbed the ‘World’s Coolest Marathon’ by Runner’s World magazine in 2004 There have been 12 North Pole Marathons to date Approximately 350 people from 40 nations have successfully completed the event It’s impossible to predict winning times because weather conditions and terrain are variable from one year to the next The men’s record of 3:36:10 was set by Thomas Maguire (IRL) in 2007 The women’s record of 4:52:45 was set by Anne-Marie Flammersfeld (GER) in 2014 Two guided blind athletes, Mark Pollock and Jamie Cuthbertson, completed the race in 2004 and 2010, respectively In 2007, William Tan – a wheelchair competitor – completed a marathon distance on the aircraft runway Participants are eligible to join the exclusive Marathon Grand Slam Club by finishing a marathon on each of the seven continents and the North Pole Marathon It all started in 2002 The first ever North Pole Marathon was a ‘solo’ run by Richard Donovan. Richard won the First Ever South Pole Marathon ten weeks previously and became the first marathoner at both poles by completing the North Pole Marathon. Following the 2003 North Pole Marathon, the business known as Polar Running Adventures was established by Richard Donovan to operate future marathons at the pole. The 2004 race...
The history of Vasaloppet, the world’s oldest & biggest ski race

The history of Vasaloppet, the world’s oldest & biggest ski race

The first race was held in 1922 over the classic 90 km distance from Sälen to Mora in Sweden, commemorating a 1520 historic event In 1520, the young nobleman Gustav Ericsson Vasa was escaping from the troops of Christian II, king of Denmark, Sweden and Norway (the Kalmar Union). Much of the Swedish nobility was in opposition to the king, and had nicknamed him Christian the Tyrant. In a move to silence the opposition, Christian invited the Swedish aristocracy to a reconciliation party in Stockholm, only to have them, including Gustav’s parents, massacred in what came to be known as the Stockholm Bloodbath. Gustav was escaping through Dalarna, fearing for his life if he were discovered by the king’s troops, when he spoke to the assembled men of Mora and tried to convince them to start a rebellion against King Christian, the men refused to join the rebellion, and Gustav started toward Norway to seek refuge. However, he was later caught at Sälen by two Mora brothers on skis – the men in Mora had changed their minds after hearing that the Danish rulers had decided to raise taxes, and they now wanted Gustav to lead the rebellion. After two and a haf years of war, Gustav Vasa was crowned king of Sweden on 6 June 1523 , having defeated the Danish king Christian and dissolved the Kalmar Union. Sweden has been fully independent ever since. Today Vasaloppet winter week has eight different ski races over ten days and there are also Trail running and cycling summer events. Vasaloppet attracts a total of over 90,000 participants every year. Outdoor...
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