WHAT IS IRUN4ULTRA?
As any elite athlete knows, the best antidote for pain is passion. We are IRun4Ultra, and we share the passion of the ultra-running community daily through a comprehensive multimedia approach that seeks to capture every drop of sweat, every flexed quadriceps, every trial and triumph, mile after mile.
Travelling the world, we produce award-winning documentaries, on-scene race coverage, articles, interviews, podcasts and social media that brings the running world to your chosen screen.
From the scorching Death Valley deserts of Badwater to the rain-soaked Tennessee mountains of Barkley, whether the starting line is a trail in Spain or an ancient cave in Turkey, our team is there to serve as the global leader in running-related media.
One thing we don’t seek to replicate, however, is the loneliness of the long distance runner. So, we encourage you to share your own running adventures and local races with us! Follow IRun4Ultra on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and tell us your story. After all, one of the greatest attributes of the ultra-running community is its sense of camaraderie — and as such, the IRun4Ultra team is always eager to embrace new running partners.
Our goal is to showcase running’s potential as a source of healing — for the body and the mind. We strive to empower a general audience of both athletes and interested observers, because the runner’s journey is ultimately a metaphor for any passage through life, as we overcome obstacles and grapple with pain that threatens to thwart whatever personal goals we set along the trail run of modern existence.
Running for a Cause
Marathoner Linda Sanders and Team I Run 4 Ultra head to Africa to raise awareness for ADHD.
WRITTEN BY AMBER KLINCK | PHOTOGRAPHED BY JEFF BERTING
Life comes with its own set of challenges—that’s unavoidable. How we choose to deal with those challenges, however, is up to us. When life threw a curveball at Manhattan Beach resident Linda Sanders, the founder and chair of the board of Hope So Bright, she went in search of perspective and poured her energy into giving back.
“I founded close to three years ago, after my divorce,” Sanders explains. “I’ve always been a giver, but after my divorce, I thought, ‘What should I do with this pain? Should I reminisce over what I did wrong, what I did right and what I should have done better?’”
Instead, Sanders started spending time in the cancer ward of the children’s hospital. “I observed people going back and forth, kids in pain and the desperation of their parents,” Sanders notes. “I realized that, although it was painful, was nothing compared to what was happening with these kids or what their parents were feeling.”I used to wake up in the middle of the night in Mexico when I was young, maybe around 10 years old, and go out into the streets and steal dogs that were chained, not being fed or needed help.”
With a sense of gratitude for her own children’s well-being, Sanders decided to form a foundation where she could focus her time and energy into something positive while helping kids in need.
One of six children, she was born in Spain and raised in Mexico. Life with her family was filled with love and support, but Sanders was sensitive to the needs of others around her, including animals.
“I used to wake up in the middle of the night in Mexico when I was young, maybe around 10 years old, and go out into the streets and steal dogs that were chained, not being fed or needed help,” Sanders says. After taking in the neglected animals, she would nurse them back to health and adopt them out.
That same give-back nature she had as a child has manifested itself today into the Hope So Bright Foundation—a nonprofit organization with the goal of promoting “awareness, collaboration, education, resources and advocacy for children with learning disabilities.” Through numerous events, participation in international marathons and the I Run 4 Hope campaign, Hope So Bright works to raise awareness and funding for their cause.
Their most recent endeavor: the Marathon des Sables, widely considered the toughest footrace on earth. Taking place in the Sahara Desert, with more than 156 miles of sand dunes and temperatures surpassing 100º, runners carry their gear on their backs and head out for the physical accomplishment of a lifetime.
This year’s runners for Team I Run 4 Hope were Marco Olmo (Italy), Harvey Lewis (U.S.), Jason Schlarb (U.S.), Ricardo Mejia Hernandez (Mexico) and Carlos Sa (Portugal). The official end of the race was April 15, with an additional open 6k race on the 16th dedicated to UNICEF.
After 10 long days of travel in Africa, it’s clear to see how committed Sanders is to her cause. Still, with so much on her plate, her main focus is her two boys. While giving them the support and love they need, Sanders makes sure their eyes are open to the world around them.
“My boys travel all over,” she notes. “I make sure that my kids don’t get the full volume of what’s going on in the world, because they’re too young, but I want to give them a little bit of empathy. I want to make sure they know that they are lucky to have what they have … so when they become adults, they too can give back.”
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Source @ Southbay