Published in OutDare Adventures 1 Oct 2012
The progression of an endurance runner:
First you go for a walk down your street. Then you progress to a 10km run, a sprint distance triathlon, followed by an Olympic distance. Now you do a marathon, a double Olympics even, and then, duh duh duh, the legendary Ironman!
You still want more you say?
How about the Race across America (RAAM), or the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc, the Antarctic 100k Ultra Race, or perhaps even the Namibian 24 hour Ultra Marathon?
But, none are quite as prestigious as the Marathon des Sables. This event is the equivalent of six regular marathons all rolled up into one and dropped down in the middle of the Sahara desert. It is crazy, but it is brilliant.
All you need to survive for the 7 day, 151 mile race, rests on your back. Literally. Competitors carry all their supplies; food, water, sleeping bag, etc., in a backpack for the duration of the race. Competitors battle through rugged terrain and punishing heat; they suffer exhaustion and swollen aching feet.
The Marathon Des Sables course changes annually. The route is not released until two days before the race begins adding another dimension to this extreme endeavor. The dates for this year are April 7-13 and will set you back a tasty US $3,900.
But just think how would it feel if you completed this feat of physical and mental endurance?
If you smile when you think of the answer, then start saving and start training, because this race could be for you.
Click here to learn more.