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Monthly Archives - April 2016

Day 5: The Last Day! Marathon Des Sables

STOP PRESS!

I Run 4 Ultra take SECOND PLACE in the team competition for Marathon des Sables 2016!
Our team of runners: Carlos Sa, Jason Schlarb, Ricardo Hernandez, Marco Olmo, and Harvey Lewis have taken second place in the 31st edition of the Marathon des Sables, the toughest footrace on earth.
It is the most fantastic result and we could not be more proud of our runners. They have braved over 250km across the Sahara desert in 5 stages, carrying all their own equipment and food for the race with water rations in place and always under the burning sun. They have battled sand dunes, salt flats, high hills, claustrophobic river valleys and rocky gorges to win their place on the podium just behind TGCC, the winning Moroccan team.
An amazing team result built on their individual successes!
The final results for the individuals in the team in the overall classification were as follows:
8th   Carlos Sa  23h 59
12th Jason Schlarb  24h 58
23rd Ricardo Hernandez  27h 48
30th Marco Olmo 29h 32
92nd Harvey Lewis  34h 47
Our team were running to raise awareness of ADHD which affects one in ten children in America. They were all proud to take on this challenge for us and had this to say to us before the race.

Marathon Des Sables race

Photography by Dino Bonelli from Run the World

Ricardo Hernandez, “For me, it is a pleasure and honor to be able to represent an organization like Hope So Bright, that prides itself and dedicates to raising awareness to help children with ADHD in this day and age.
Many children have been affected and diagnosed, from all over the world. I am a father and son. I have experienced firsthand what it is like to deal with something of the unknown. It is difficult for families to deal with these emotional and inhibitory issues when they don’t know where to go or turn for help. Fortunately, as Hope So Bright is dedicated to helping children and young adults it speaks in loud volumes to the public in raising awareness for ADHD.”
Harvey Lewis, “As a teacher and athlete I’m honored to join the Hope So Bright Campaign for children. As a child, I had a learning disability and the investments and dedication made by my teachers, parents, and community paved the way for the opportunities I enjoy today. I’m concerned about our nation’s standard approach to ADHD and treatment that generally focuses solely on medicating children. From my observations of children in various countries and personal experience with ADHD I believe greater strides should be made toward holistic approaches to overcoming ADHD including nutrition, exercise and learning styles. I’m interested in bringing greater awareness and hope to inspire folks through our shared journey along Marathon De Sables. I’m excited about the Odyssey ahead.”
Marco Olmo, “” There’s one week per year in which there is no room for small-mindedness, deception, cowardice, or deceit, and it is the week of the Marathon des Sables. I am honored to be part of the team representing the organization, Hope So Bright for Marathon des Sables.”
Carlos Sa, “This is an opportunity to be doing what I like best, running with friends, and to be, at the same time, contributing positively to another noble cause of this organization.  In this case, we are helping to combat ADHD and drawing attention to the importance of physical exercise and healthy eating.  I don’t doubt that I should do everything possible to fully integrate myself in this challenge”
Jason Schlarb, “I am proud to represent Hope So Bright at the Marathon Des Sables race.  Helping children is certainly one of the most important things anyone can do in life and I am honored, inspired and humbled to represent Hope So Bright and their amazing cause.
Our great team’s efforts go a long way to continuing to raise awareness of ADHD, its diagnosis and treatments and we would like to thank them most sincerely for undertaking this challenge for Hope So Bright.
Tomorrow is the charity stage and then they will be arriving back at the hotels ready to relax before they start their journeys home.
All our thanks and congratulations again to Team I Run 4 Hope! What a wonderful result and a great endeavor. Bravo, champions!

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Day 4: Marathon Des Sables 2016 – The Long Stage

The long stage in the Marathon Des Sables is a true test of determination and skill. 84.3 km over rocks, steep hills, the inevitable dunes, and river valleys. The course’s organizers make sure that they lead the race over some of the most challenging terrain that the Sahara desert has to offer – and that is pretty challenging!
It is a Marathon Des Sables tradition that the top fifty runners have to start the stage three hours after the main field has set off. As four of our team are in that top fifty, it made the race much more difficult for them as they started as the sun was reaching its hottest and ran right through the heat of midday and early afternoon, finishing after nightfall.
Even though it is the longest and toughest stage, day four of the Marathon Des Sables is always the one that runners talk about and remember with the most clarity. Running through a desert sunset is a privilege and no-one who has ever done it will forget it.
The course for stage 4 included the highest and most difficult ascent of the entire race. There are fixed ropes at the top to help the competitors for the final few meters. It is called Jebel el Otfal and has a ratio of 12% increasing to 30%. After that there are still two more jebels to tackle as well dunes and long rocky gorges.
Night falls in Morocco around 8.15 pm local times so all of the runners finished in the darkness.  For the main field, many of them will STILL be running or walking to the finish line today (Thursday).
But our runners all got back to the bivouac safely and ran yet another fantastic stage. They are running to raise awareness of ADHD and are doing the most incredible job. 100% effort 100% of the time.

The places overall and the total times for MDS so far for Team I Run 4 Ultra are:

7th Carlos Sa 20 hrs 20
11th Jason Schlarb 21 hrs 21
23rd Ricardo Hernandez 23 hrs 26
29th Marco Olmo 25 hrs 12
119th Harvey Lewis 30 hrs 08
We spoke to Linda Sanders who is following the runners and filming them for the documentary, “Desert Around Me”. She says it was an incredibly hot and exhausting day but that everyone is well and will spend today recovering.
Enjoy your rest day Team I Run 4 Ultra! You deserve it. Just one more race day to go.  Keep going guys, we are all behind you!
Don’t forget we are posting pictures from our photographer Dino Bonelli from Run The World on Facebook and Twitter all through the day.

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Italian Running Hero Bids for Desert Crown

Italian Running Hero Bids for Desert Crown

Marco Olmo: “In my everyday life I’m a loser…I run for revenge, I run for vengeance.”

By Alice Hunter Morrison, Moroccan-based Journalist, winner of Best Africa Blog, RunUltra, and Special Correspondent to Hope So Bright

April 6, 2016

Marco Olmo, the legendary Italian runner and two-time winner of UTMB has united with four other trail stars to take on the legendary Marathon des Sables, the toughest footrace on earth. He joins Harvey Sweetland Lewis and Jason Schlarb (USA), Carlos Sa (Portugal), and Ricardo Mejia Hernandez (Mexico), to run the team competition at Marathon Des Sables 2016. Last year he placed 16th at MdS at the age of 66.
The team has been brought together by USA Ultra Runner, Linda Sanders, to create awareness of the plight of children suffering from ADHD. A staggering one in ten children in the USA is diagnosed with the condition and seven billion dollars a year is spent on drugs. Their team name is: I Run 4 Hope.
The Marathon des Sables is called the Toughest Footrace on Earth. It is six marathons in six days across the Sahara Desert in Morocco. The middle marathon is a double. Temperatures regularly reach 50 degrees C. The terrain is arduous with endless miles of sand dunes and salt flats, interspersed with rocky trails. Competitors must be self-sufficient and carry all their own food and equipment for the week. Water is rationed. Dehydration and bloodied feet are the enemy, but contestants who need to be put on a drip incur time penalties for using extra water.
“In my everyday life, I’m a loser…I run for revenge, I run for vengeance,” says Marco Olmo, who at the age of 66, came in 16th overall in last year’s competition. “But this time I am honored to be part of the team representing the organization, Hope So Bright, and raising awareness about ADHD.”
 

FURTHER INFORMATION

Please find attached a full article and sample photographs. High-Resolution pictures are available on request through Dropbox. For INTERVIEWS, more photos or any further information please contact:
• Erika Dial + 1 (310) 374-2862 [email protected]
• Linda Sanders or Lisa Enriquez + 1 (310) 374-2862 [email protected]
• For more information on Hope So Bright please visit www.hopesobright.org

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Toughest Footrace on Earth begins: Team I Run 4 Ultra are there

The racers for the Marathon Des Sables, the toughest footrace on earth, have arrived at their camp in the Sahara desert. The race starts at 9.00 am (GMT) on Sunday the 10 the April. Six marathons in six days across the most hostile wilderness on earth.
Harvey Sweetland Lewis (USA) winner of Bad Water and Jason Schlarb, multi ultra winner, (USA) have come together with three other top international athletes, Marco Olmo (Italy), Carlos Sa (Portugal) and Ricardo Mejia Hernandez (Mexico), to contend for the team crown as team I Run 4 Ultra.
Traditionally the men’s and team race has been dominated by Moroccan contestants, but team I Run 4 Ultra

Hope will be challenging that!

The race is designed to test the mettle of the toughest and fittest. It is six marathons in six days, and the middle one is double marathon distance at 60 miles plus. The terrain is extreme with towering sand dunes, blinding dried lake flats and burning sands. The temperature will average in the high 40s and reach over 50 degrees during the race.
Team, I Run 4 Ultra has been brought together by USA Ultra Runner and founder of Hope So Bright,
Linda Sanders, to create awareness of the plight of children suffering from ADHD through her
organization, Hope So Bright. A staggering one in ten children in the USA is diagnosed with the condition and seven billion dollars a year is spent on drugs.
Schlarb speaks for the whole team when he says of his participation in the Marathon des Sables for
Team, I Run 4 Ultra, “I am proud to represent Hope So Bright at the Marathon Des Sables race.  Helping
children are certainly one of the most important things anyone can do in life and I am honored, inspired
and humbled to represent Hope So Bright and their amazing cause.”
Good Luck Team I Run 4 Ultra! We are rooting for you!

For live updates follow us on Twitter @Irun4hope or Facebook I Run 4 Hope

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Top Colorado Trail Runner to Challenge for Desert Crown

Top Colorado Trail Runner to Challenge for Desert Crown

By Alice Hunter Morrison, Moroccan-based Journalist, winner of Best Africa Blog, RunUltra, and Special Correspondent to Hope So Bright

April 5, 2016

Jason Schlarb of Durango, Colorado, the international trail runner champion, has united with four other trail stars to take on the legendary Marathon des Sables, the toughest footrace on earth. He joins Harvey Sweetland Lewis (USA), Marco Olmo (Italy), Carlos Sa (Portugal) and Ricardo Mejia Hernandez (Mexico), to run the team competition at Marathon Des Sables 2016.
They have been brought together by USA Ultra Runner, Linda Sanders, to create awareness of the plight of children suffering from ADHD. A staggering one in ten children in the USA is diagnosed with the condition and seven billion dollars a year is spent on drugs. Their team name is called IRun4Ultra.
The Marathon des Sables is called the Toughest Footrace on Earth. It is six marathons in six days across the Sahara Desert in Morocco. The middle marathon is a double. Temperatures regularly reach 50 degrees C. The terrain is arduous with endless miles of sand dunes and salt flats, interspersed with rocky trails. Competitors must be self-sufficient and carry all their own food and equipment for the week. Water is rationed. Dehydration and bloodied feet are the enemy, but contestants who need to be put on a drip incur time penalties for using extra water.
Schlarb says of his participation in the Marathon des Sables for Team IRun4Ultra, “I am proud to represent Hope So Bright at the Marathon des Sables race. Helping children is certainly one of the most important things anyone can do in life and I am honored, inspired and humbled to represent Hope So Bright and their amazing cause.”
FURTHER INFORMATION
Please find attached a full article and sample photographs. High-Resolution pictures are available on request through Dropbox. For INTERVIEWS, more photos or any further information please contact:
• Erika Dial + 1 (310) 374-2862 [email protected]
• Linda Sanders or Lisa Enriquez + 1 (310) 374-2862 [email protected]
• For more information on Hope So Bright please visit www.hopesobright.org

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Cincinatti Running Hero Challenges for Desert Race

Cincinnati Running Hero Challenges for Desert Race

By Alice Hunter Morrison, Moroccan-based Journalist, winner of Best Africa Blog, RunUltra, and Special Correspondent to Hope So Bright

April 5, 2016

Harvey Sweetland Lewis of Cincinnati, Ohio, the winner of the legendary US trail marathon, Badwater® 135, has joined four other top international athletes, Jason Schlarb (USA), Carlos Sa (Portugal), Marco Olmo (Italy), two-time winner of UTMB, and Ricardo Mejia Hernandez (Mexico), to run the team competition at the Marathon des Sables 2016.
They have been brought together by USA Ultra Runner, Linda Sanders, to create awareness of the plight of children suffering from ADHD. A staggering one in ten children in the USA is diagnosed with the condition. Their team name is I Run 4 Ultra.
The Marathon des Sables is called the Toughest Footrace on Earth. It is six marathons in six days across the Sahara Desert. The middle marathon is a double. Temperatures regularly reach 50 degrees C. The terrain is arduous with endless miles of sand dunes and salt flats, interspersed with rocky trails. Competitors must be self-sufficient and carry all their own food and equipment for the week.
With his health and the environment as motivation, Lewis has run to work for most of his adult life: as a college student, a factory worker, and even a car salesperson (before he became a teacher). When interviewed after his 3:20 sprint finish at the inaugural Cincinnati Flying Pig Marathon in 1999, Lewis joked: “I am the only car salesman in America who runs to and from work.”
Lewis often posts videos of his training strategies, races and his morning-after commutes to his Ultra Runner social media outlet, recounting the people who inspire him along the way while simultaneously holding himself accountable to his goals. Lewis encourages people to find a source of inspiration and pursue one’s dreams to the fullest.
FURTHER INFORMATION
Please find attached a full article and sample photographs. High-Resolution pictures are available on request through Dropbox. For interviews or additional information, please contact
• Erika Dial + 1 (310) 374-2862 [email protected]
• Linda Sanders or Lisa Enriquez + 1 (310) 374-2862 [email protected]
• For more information on Hope So Bright please visit www.hopesobright.org

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California Challenge

California Challenge

By Alice Hunter Morrison, Moroccan-based Journalist, winner of Best Africa Blog, RunUltra, and Special Correspondent to Hope So Bright

April 4, 2016

Linda Sanders, philanthropist and ultra runner from Manhattan Beach, California has brought together a group of world champion runners to challenge for the crown at Marathon des Sables, the toughest footrace on earth. She is doing it to draw attention to ADHD which affects one in ten children in the USA.
Harvey Sweetland Lewis (USA) winner of Badwater® 135 and Jason Schlarb, multi-ultra winner (USA), will run with three other top international athletes, Marco Olmo (Italy), Carlos Sa (Portugal) and Ricardo Mejia Hernandez (Mexico), in the team competition at Marathon des Sables 2016.
The team has been assembled by USA Ultra Runner, Linda Sanders, to create awareness of the plight of children suffering from ADHD. A staggering one in ten children in the USA is diagnosed with the condition and seven billion dollars a year is spent on drugs. Their team name is called IRun4Ultra.
The Marathon des Sables is called the Toughest Footrace on Earth. It is six marathons in six days across the Sahara Desert in Morocco. The middle marathon is a double. Temperatures regularly reach 50 degrees C. The terrain is arduous with endless miles of sand dunes and salt flats, interspersed with rocky trails. Competitors must be self-sufficient and carry all their own food and equipment for the week. Water is rationed. Dehydration and bloodied feet are the enemy, but contestants who need to be put on a drip incur time penalties for using extra water.
Schlarb says of his participation in the Marathon des Sables for Team I Run 4 Ultra, “I am proud to represent Hope So Bright at the Marathon des Sables race. Helping children is certainly one of the most important things anyone can do in life and I am honored, inspired and humbled to represent Hope So Bright and their amazing cause.”
FURTHER INFORMATION
Please find attached a full article and sample photographs. High-Resolution pictures are available on request through Dropbox. For more photos or any further information please contact ALICE on [email protected]
If you need to contact us by phone, our USA-based team are:
• Erika Dial + 1 (310) 374-2862 [email protected]
• Linda Sanders or Lisa Enriquez + 1 (310) 374-2862 [email protected]
• For more information on Hope So Bright please check out www.hopesobright.org

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Montana Track Star to Challenge for Desert Crown

Montana Track Star to Challenge for Desert Crown

By Alice Hunter Morrison, Moroccan-based Journalist, winner of Best Africa Blog, RunUltra, and Special Correspondent to Hope So Bright

April 3, 2016
Jason Schlarb, who ran indoor and outdoor track for Montana State University, Bozeman, Montana and is now an international trail running champion, has united with four other trail stars to take on the legendary Marathon des Sables, the toughest footrace on earth. He joins Harvey Sweetland Lewis (USA), Marco Olmo (Italy), Carlos Sa (Portugal) and Ricardo Mejia Hernandez (Mexico), to run the team competition at Marathon des Sables 2016.
They have been brought together by USA Ultra Runner, Linda Sanders, to create awareness of the plight of children suffering from ADHD. A staggering one in ten children in the USA is diagnosed with this condition and seven billion dollars a year is spent on drugs. Their team name is: IRun4Ultra.
The Marathon des Sables is called the Toughest Footrace on Earth. It is six marathons in six days across the Sahara Desert in Morocco. The middle marathon is a double. Temperatures regularly reach 50 degrees C. The terrain is arduous with endless miles of sand dunes and salt flats, interspersed with rocky trails. Competitors must be self sufficient and carry all their own food and equipment for the week. Water is rationed. Dehydration and bloodied feet are the enemy, but contestants who need to be put on a drip incur time penalties for using extra water.
Schlarb says of his participation in the Marathon des Sables for Team IRun4Ultra, “I am proud to represent Hope So Bright at the Marathon des Sables race. Helping children is certainly one of the most important things anyone can do in life and I am honored, inspired and humbled to represent Hope So Bright and their amazing cause.”
FURTHER INFORMATION
Please find attached a full article and sample photographs. High Resolution pictures are available on request through dropbox. For INTERVIEWS with Jason Schlarb, more photos or any further information please contact:
• Erika Dial + 1 (310) 374-2862 [email protected]
• Linda Sanders or Lisa Enriquez + 1 (310) 374-2862 [email protected]
• For more information on Hope So Bright please visit www.hopesobright.org

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Badwater 135

Badwater® 135 and UTMB Legends Unite to Go for Marathon des Sables Crown

Badwater® 135 and UTMB Legends Unite to Go for Marathon des Sables Crown

By Alice Hunter Morrison, Moroccan-based Journalist, winner of Best Africa Blog, RunUltra, and Special Correspondent to Hope So Bright

 
April 1, 2016
Harvey Sweetland Lewis (USA) winner of Badwater 135 and Marco Olmo (Italy) two-time winner of UTMB have come together with three other top international athletes, Jason Schlarb (USA), Carlos Sa (Portugal) and Ricardo Mejia Hernandez (Mexico) Badwater 135, to run the team competition at Marathon des Sables.
They have been brought together by USA Ultra Runner, Linda Sanders, to create awareness of the plight of children suffering from ADHD. A staggering one in ten children in the USA is diagnosed with this condition.
The Marathon des Sables is called the Toughest Footrace on Earth. It is six marathons in six days across the Sahara Desert. The middle marathon is a double. Temperatures regularly reach 50 degrees C. The terrain is arduous with endless miles of sand dunes and salt flats, interspersed with rocky trails. Competitors must be self sufficient and carry all their own food and equipment for the week.
“In my everyday life I’m a loser….I run for revenge, I run for vengeance,” says Marco Olmo, who at the age of 66 came in 16th overall in last year’s competition. “But this time I am honored to be part of the team representing the organization, Hope So Bright and raising awareness for ADHD.”
FURTHER INFORMATION
Please find attached a full article and sample photographs. High Resolution pictures are available on request through dropbox. For more photos or any further information please contact ALICE on [email protected]
For more information about Hope So Bright, please visit www.hopesobright.org

Read more...