I have been thinking about putting this blog together for some time but my friends Life, Work, and Running keep getting in the damn way. I finally found a humid Sunday afternoon to take a break from running the streets of NJ and NY looking like a moron with my 15lb pack on to get my first post up. This October, I will be running 155 miles across the Sahara Desert in the 4 Deserts Sahara Race (http://www.4deserts.com/sahararace/) While I have experience running marathons here in the states (5 to be exact) I have no experience in ultra marathon events, so this is going to be quite a challenge for me. My good friend John Carter ran across the Gobi Desert in China 2 years ago and spoke highly of the experience how it was a good next step for me.
The race starts on October 3, so over the next 10 weeks I will be documenting my training regimen, what’s working, what’s not, and how my body is affected by all of the running. Since I started training 6 weeks ago, I have already lost about 10 pounds and am at my lightest weight since I was 15, which makes me feel like I would get my ass kicked by someone that age. What makes the race really difficult besides the distance and the 110 degree temperatures is the pack that you run with. All competitors must run with all of their food and equipment on their back. The average weight of the bag at the starting line is approximately 20 pounds. I have been working my way up to this weight to try to replicate what it will feel like during the race and luckily this NYC summer has been extremely hot and humid, which makes for better training weather. Right now, I am running with a 10lb. bag of rice and a 4lb. bag of peanuts, along with some other clothing and equipment that brings my current pack weight up to around 17lbs. I hope to get the training pack weight up to around 23 pounds so it feels lighter in the Sahara but I need to do it slowly as my body is taking some time to adjust to all of the extra weight on my back.
Even 10 weeks before the race, I have already met so many amazing people through the race that have made this journey worth it. Along with the selfish reasons of trying to accomplish something of this nature, I am raising money for cancer research for Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. So many people have been generous already and I know so many more will be over the next 10 weeks. Here is the link if you would like to donate – http://mskcc.convio.net/site/TR?px=1768443&fr_id=1370&pg=personal
Leave me some comments on any training strategies you can think of, or even creative ways to raise money for Sloan-Kettering!