Though he has been running with regularity for more than 20 years, Chris Valenti is not a very good runner. His first attempt at competitive running was a disaster. When he was in junior high, he went to try-outs for the track team and failed miserably. He gave it is best effort, but not only was he dead-last, the others passed him as if he were standing still. Because of this experience, he and others held very low lifelong athletic expectations. But if there is one thing that he was good at, it was persistence. It wasn’t until later that he decided to see how far he could go. After completing a marathon, he stepped across the finish line and wondered, “why do we stop at 26.2?” It wasn’t until Chris decided to remove that limit that he was able to begin to discover what he might achieve. Running far is Chris’s personal curiosity that continues to yield new discoveries. (from RemoveTheLimits.org). Chris also works with TASH.
The Marathon des Sables is ranked by the Discovery Channel as the toughest footrace on earth.
Known simply as the MdS, the race is a grueling multi-stage adventure through a formidable landscape in one of the world’s most inhospitable climates – the Sahara desert. The rules require you to be self-sufficient, to carry with you on your back everything except water that you need to survive. You are given a place in a tent to sleep at night, but any other equipment and food must be carried.
Started in 1986 by Patrick Bauer, the race is now in its 28th consecutive year and continues to grow in popularity every edition. 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 salt pans, up desert-mountains, through ruined towns and through the occasional sand storm.
The Marathon des Sables is open to individuals and teams of individuals, amateur and elite runners. With runners coming from all over the world, the MdS is a truly international event that has a positive impact on the local environment and in local communities. Through the MdS foundation Solidarite, runners have raised funds to help hundreds of families through education and improve their quality of life. (From http://www.marathondessables.co.uk)
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