Sunday, January 10, 2010

Running the Sahara

Last Thursday, Cary and I watched the documentary Running the Sahara about three runners who, yup, that's right, run across the great African desert--coast to coast. The journey chalked up to about two marathon distances per day (around 50 miles total) for 111 days (4,620 miles total the source says).

There was gravelly dirt, village paths, city sidewalks, sand (like running on the spines of dunes!), that desolate stone desert looking stuff you see in car commercials, lots of peanut butter, a little drama, one almost quit, everyone hurt, and the whole film was this pretty good insider look that made the feat so interesting, so astounding, and quite literally the documenting of three miracles. Those sponsors knew how amazing this would be.

Cary, a physical therapist by day, and myself, could not believe the trekkers didn't just collapse, knees, hips, and arches just plain done. A few other amazing things...
  • The runners consisted of men who look just shy of middle age, two recovering addicts who started running not long ago at all, and one a more elite runner from Taiwan.
  • The biggest guy had lost 45 pounds about 3/4 of the way through, the medium guy 35, and the small guy 25.
  • There were times when they running 12 hours a day, sleeping an hour at a time sometimes in a sleeping bag on the desert floor when the van pit-stopped (a great team that led the way with their car tracks) Magellan helped too.
  • And any guy who had to sit out a whole day would have to forfeit continuing.

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