The third Run The World Challenge sponsored by My Best Runs (MBR) has finished. The team of 105 active runners, who ran and logged miles in 23 different countries, finished last night (January 5) in 68 days 17 hours and 18 minutes.
The event created by MBR Founder Bob Anderson is all about running and then logging in those miles, posting photos and comments in our runner’s feed to help motivate the team and inspire others. The team has to run/walk and then log in 24,901 miles (40,074k) to complete the challenge.
“This is the distance around the world,” says 71-year-old Bob Anderson who himself ran and logged 297 miles.
“Our team from around the world and ranging in ages from six to 74 did an amazing job,” says Bob. The team logged an average of 362 miles per day and the team had to stay focused for over two months. “With our busy lives that is not easy,” says Lisa Wall a team member.
34-year-old Eliud Lokol Esinyen from Kenya and running most of his miles in Eldoret logged the most miles with 1,298.59. He averaged 18.9 miles daily, many days he worked out three times. Finishing in second was 27-year-old Boaz Kipyego also from Kenya. However he spent about five weeks in Minnesota USA running and racing. He ran and logged in 1,129.41 miles.
First American was 74-year-old Frank Bozanich from Reno Nevada. The previous five time national champion at 50 miles and 100k ran and logged in 1,036.19, good enough for third place. “This is his third time around the world with us,” says Bob. “Many people say that age is only a number and certainly age is not stopping Frank. He told me he is running a lot slower these days because he has put a lot of miles on his body, however. Well done Frank, on an age-graded basis this has to be the best performance,” says Bob.
There were five male runners 70 plus in the top 31 places. In fact 72-year-old Paul Shimon placed sixth overall running most of his 893.06 miles in Winfield Kansas. Like many of the team he had to deal with a lot of issues including the cold, snow and darkness.
Super star Michael Wardian (photo top left) placed 8th overall and ran some of the best times including clocking 2:34:54 at the New York City Marathon. He also ran a tough 50-miler in Israel. He posted 651 miles for his third trip around the world with us. In a few weeks he is going after his world record he set in 2017 at the World Marathon Challenge. That’s running seven marathons in seven days on seven continents.
On the women side, ultra super star 48-year-old Gloria Nasr ran and logged 422.54 miles to place first female. Gloria lives in Paris, France. Some of her miles were also ran in Peru when she travelled there to run an Ultra (photo upper right). She has also run the six stage race through the desert of Morocco in the past.
In second place was Kenya’s Rosaline Nyawira who currently is living, training and racing in South Africa. She ran and logged 394.01 miles.
Third and first America woman was 71-year-old Karen Galati who logged in 223.88 miles. She ran most of her miles in Rancho Palos Verdes, California. As she wrote on her profile “Better late than never to this addicting sport.”
Miles run and logged in the top five countries were USA, Kenya, Palau, South Africa and India. The small country of Palau was in second place the first few weeks. The Run The World Challenge group there lead by Aaron Salvador have so much spirit. Most weekends they get together and run ten to fifteen miles. “You can always count on us to post photos and comments too,” says Aaron.
Our group from South Africa lead by Lize Dumon has just as much spirit. During the challenge Lize completed her first marathon and just got over 200 for the team. The Fourie family in South Africa has to get the top spirit award. The two kids (Michelle age 6 and Jonathan age 7), the mom (Erika) and grandma (Johanna) posted nearly every day and collectively logged in 455 miles. Even the dad joined in many days.
“This was not our best RTW performance but this one has to be our toughest with many challenges,” says Bob. “Many of our team had to deal with early cold and snow in the United States and Canada. Our runners in Palau had to deal with heavy rain and wind. In South Africa it was over 100 degrees many days. In California our runners had to deal with unhealthy air quality for two weeks because of the smoke from the wild fires. A majority of our team had to deal with shorter days and run in the dark. And on top of everything there were three major holidays during Challenge3.
”I am very proud of our whole team. It is hard to stay focused on something like this for over two months but we did it. We made it around the world. For many of us for the third time. There are so many more stories I want to share’” says Bob. “Well done team. Let’s do it again.”
Details for the next Run The World Challenge will be announced soon. (01/06/2019) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson Team Caption
Funny thing about running. A lot of it is solitary and we all thrive on being alone so its fine, at least part of the time. Meanwhile there isn’t much better than the camaraderie of a group or team run.
Conversations wax and wane and the personal bonds formed and memories made are often inseparable and indelible. The miles disappear, the pace quickens and the distance covered grows, it’s somehow invariably easier to be inspired to do more as part of a group.
It seems like we runners need a little of both; the quiet of running alone, lost in thought but with a good dose of runs on a team or with a friend or friends. Both have a place and are magical in their own special way.
Bob Anderson’s MyBestRuns hosts a periodic online event, repeated through the year, called Run the World Global Challenge and it fosters what we do alone and the joy in being connected while doing it.
Each event involves a hundred runners or so from all over the planet having signed up and committed to a cyber team effort to accumulate the running and walking mileage necessary to circumnavigate the 24,901 miles around the planet earth over a couple of months.
Participants post a daily (or in the case of some serious athletes, multiple times daily) run or walk, with a picture and little diary entry. I think most of the miles by all involved are solitary but all as part of the team effort to accomplish a goal bigger than any one of us.
It’s a unique, fascinating and inspirational use of social media. It has motivated me personally to do more, to be earnest in my efforts to rehabilitate my body following some personal health issues. There is a commitment, low key personal accountability, a real sense of achievement and camaraderie as words of encouragement and quiet competition creep in as we each do our part to collectively make it around the world.
The often lovely posts feature photographs of places run and selfies taken that somehow serve to enlighten and makes the world a smaller and more peaceful place, slightly reminiscent of the way world travel does.
I’m midway through my third trip around the world since July. I’ve contributed a total of about 500 miles, about the distance from my adopted home in New York City to my native eastern Maine.
This third team has already made it 8,850 miles in the first 25 days of running and walking (and posting). We’ve done enough to make it roughly from California to Europe and at our current average of about 350 miles per day we will have made it around again on about January 8th of the new year.
If so it will have taken us a total of 71 days, a good 9 days faster than Jules Verne imagined and fantasized about back in 1873. Go team!
(Editor’s note: Larry Allen is a 50 year runner and artist (self portrait) who currently is dealing with a health issue.
His wisdom and knowledge of our sport is impressive and this is why we asked him to regularly share his thoughts here - Larry Allen on Running. You can also follow Larry on our RTW Challenge feed.) (11/22/2018) ⚡AMPby Larry Allen
I am Larry Allen. I am 64-year-old, a 50 year runner and doing the Run The World Challenge for the third time.
In 1965 I was living in Maine, Great Cranberry Island. A small, isolated, offshore island adjacent to a national park with only 80 residents. I started running there and achieved some success and in 2016 I was inducted into the Maine Running Hall of Fame.
Running is very important to me. Without intending to overstate it, running fits right in with eating, brushing my teeth and sleeping. Obsessed is another word although I think over the years the obsession has been moderated to a healthier place.
My mental health depends on it to an extent. My creativity, well being, problem solving, peacefulness and certainly my ability to stay centered and in balance with life itself have always been better when I’m running.
"He is a New York City artist, who retired as the director of publishing for the Museum of Modern Art in Manhattan, “painted” in many different styles and left a truly remarkable body of work," a friend wrote.
I keep busy as an artist and as a part-time manager of the business affairs of my still very active wife Kristen Blodgette. She’s a professional musician, Musical Director, Conductor and Musical Supervisor, principally having been associated with Andrew Lloyd Webber for his Broadway and worldwide productions for over 30 years.
We live in New York City and in Fairfield County Connecticut. "Larry has run some impressive times over a wide range: 440 (51.7), 4:34 mile, 15:58 5k, 33:26 10k and a 2:46:20 marathon. He has directed many races, coached and written a lot about the sport.
When Larry turned 60 he wanted to run one more marathon," wrote Bob Anderson. I had a good year, a steady 60 miles per week. I was going to run Philly in November but about three weeks prior I tore a calf muscle severely and that was that. When I started running again about six weeks later I felt a profound fatigue and weakness that I didn’t recognize.
I assumed it was age but it was unsettling and very difficult. An old running friend and ER nurse saw the significant dip in my ability on a social media running tracking app and called me. She essentially did triage over the phone from 500 miles away and asked (told) me to immediately go the nearest walk-in clinic and to tell them she had sent me. After an EKG the doctor came into the exam room and said 'I don’t want to alarm you but you are in complete heart block and and we’ve called an ambulance.' I didn’t quite understand what heart block was but learned later that it was electrical in nature and not blocked arteries.
After emergency surgery suddenly I had a pacemaker. My cardiologist is Dr Paul Thompson, who in addition of being an esteemed physician is also an accomplished runner (15th at the 1976 Boston Marathon).
Dr. Thompson isn’t sure whether my heart block was as a result of damage done by a lot running for many years or a genetic predisposition or both but ironically he feels the strength of my heart and general health of the rest of my entire cardiovascular system as a result of years of running probably allowed me to survive the condition.
My goal today is to find the right clothes for a cold windy day and to run four miles in the woods. My goal for this week is to do it again on Friday and hopefully Sunday too. In between my goal is to briskly walk five or six miles on rest days and at a tempo that lets me recover enough to run the next day.
My goal this winter is to stay off the treadmill as much as I can and to get outside six days per week, to cover about 30 miles weekly and to enjoy every single mile. My goal for next spring is to be running the majority if not all of my miles. My goal for next summer and fall is to have it all be easier than it was this year. My goal for the year after that is to do another lap....and the same for every year.
(Editor's note: Larry's wisdom and knowledge of running is impressive and we are happy to announce that Larry will be contributing to My Best Runs on a regular basis - Larry Allen on Running. He also posts most days in the RTW Feed about his road to recovery.) (11/19/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
The little country of Palau had a lot to celebrate after finishing 5th in the Run The World Global Run Challenge 2 that concluded October 12. Palau's team leader Aaron Salvador posted in the RTW Feed, "This is now the fruit of our labors, those sweats, early morning runs, long runs and running under the rain/heat of the sun are all worth it." He himself ran and logged 378 miles during the 44 day event. Miles ran and logged in Palau totalled 1,187. Team members only ran more miles in the countries of United States, Kenya, India and South Africa. Palau is located in the western Pacific Ocean. There are mountain and sandy beaches on its east coast and grassy fields surrounded by palm trees in the north. Current population is just under 22,000. Aaron and team will be competing again in the up-coming RTW Challenge 3 starting October 29. "Our team from around the world is being put together now," says Bob Anderson
Team Caption. "We have runners of all abilities on our team. Current and past elite runners make up our team as well as runners who have just started running. All ages run and walk with us from age 11 to age 74." 34-year-old team member Carmen Gair
from South Africa wrote, "RTW Challenge 2 motivated me to log more mileage than I have ever done before in a similar time frame. I can’t wait to see what Challenge 3 brings. Absolutely love being part of this wonderful running community." 62-year-old Kiranpal Singh Dhody
from India will be participating for the third times says, "I love running for fitness...I try to push myself to get good timings in competitions and get podium finishes. The RTW Challenge helps me push myself." RTW Challenge 3 starts October 29. It is easy to participate. Just run, race or walk and then log these miles (k's) into your My Best Runs account. South Africa team leader Lize Dumon posted, "I haven't realized how precious this RTW community has become to me. It is like an extended running family...It has become a place where I learn so much about running from reading everybody's posts and a place of immense encouragement... bring on Challenge 3." This event was created by 70-year-old Bob Anderson who founded Runner's World when he was 17 and published it for 18 years. "I hope you will join our team," says Bob. "Sign up by October 29 or join us along the way." (10/22/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
Did you Know? Run The World Challenge 2 team members Becca Pizzi and Michael Wardian both ran the marathon (first woman and first man) that was run inside the Gillette Stadium in Boston September 29.
This 114 lap race was the first-ever marathon held entirely inside and on the field of an NFL football stadium.
Dave McGillivray (also a RTWC 2 team member) was the race director. "Dave's marathons are my absolute favorite and his DMSE support team is second to none," says Becca.
A ton of funds were raised for the New England Patriots Foundation helping the homeless...Both Becca and Michael have signed up for the RTW Challenge 3 team.
Run The World is an event created by lifetime runner 70-year-old Bob Anderson. He ran 260 miles for challenge 2 and even through he did not complete anything close to what Becca and Michael did, he still doubled his normal weekly mileage. Many team members were also motivated to run more hitting milestones of 50, 100, 200 or more miles before we finished.
"The finish line of the RTW Challenge is when our team have logged 24,901 miles," says Bob Anderson. It took 44 days 18 hours and 29 minutes to complete the task this time.
Runners age 11-74 ran miles in 24 different countries. In the little country of Palau 1,187 miles were logged. 74-year-old Frank Bozanich ran and logged 801 miles in the 44 days. There are so many amazing stories.
What has become really popular and a good motivator is the Run The World Feed. Many team members post notes and photos daily for other members to leave comments.
"I read every post and look at every photo and comment on each one," says Bob. "I started this with Challenge 1 and found this was a good motivator."
Lize Dumon in South Africa wrote, "The RTW community is very precious to me. It is like an extended running family, a safe place to share everything running."
RTW Challenge 3 starts October 29. The Challenge will help get you in better shape so you can reach your goals. This can be a tough time of the year to get out the door. We will help each other. Sign up today and join our team. (10/15/2018) ⚡AMP
"We have finished," says Lize Dumon (photo) a RTW Challenge 2 team member from South Africa, "Great achievement! But this morning, going out for my run just felt that little bit harder. I haven't realized how precious this RTW community has become to me. It is like an extended running family, a safe place to share everything running without rolling eyes and sighs from non-runners. It has become a place where I learn so much about running from reading everybody's posts and a place of immense encouragement! I don't want to leave this place... bring it on Challenge 3!"
Run The World Global Run Challenge is a global event celebrating running, motivating the team, inspiring others and completing the goal. The 131 member RTW Challenge 2 team ran and logged miles in 24 countries reaching a total of 24,901 miles in 44 days 18 hours 29 minutes.
"This event is a real motivator. Many of our members (including me) ran many more miles than usual," says Run The World Challenge Team Caption, Bob Anderson. 34-year-old team member Carmen Gair from South Africa posted, "Thank you...for this amazing challenge...thank you...for motivating me to run more than double my usual mileage in this amount of time."
She ran and logged 151 miles in 44 days. Team members added this challenge to their existing goals and used the Challenge to further motivate them.
"Here are the special awards for our RTW Challenge 2 team," says Bob Anderson who reached 260.66 miles himself.
For Outstanding achievement: Frank Bozanich age 74 logged 801 miles...
Most Inspiring: Lize Dumon set her goal to reach 200 miles and she did that. She also motivated other team members in South Africa that she recruited to reach their goal as well...
Most Motivating: Aaron L. Salvador from the little country of Palau logged 377.99 miles, recruited others and posted a note and photo everyday...For
Best Performance: Willie Korir (second photo) from Kenya logged the most miles (993.88) which is an average of 22.5 miles per day. This is being shared with Joel Maina Mwangi also from Kenya who not only logged in 610.44 miles but he raced four half marathons during the Challenge period clocking 1:02:52, 1:03:19, 1:02:50 and 1:02:54...
Five Most Inspiring stories: based on their story posted on My Best Runs: (this award goes to the five who received the most views on My Best Runs) Joyce Lee (1178 views), Michael Wardian (851 views), Gloria Nasr (616 views), Joel Maina Mqangi (492 views), Pete Magill (400 views)...
Best Youngest performance: Zander Brister age 11 logged 16.32 miles. He ran one mile in Hollister clocking 6:19 and he also averaged 7:42/mile pace at the Pacific Grove Double Road Race 15k...
Best Oldest performance: Frank Bozanich age 74 logged 801 miles. Shared with 71-year-old Paul Shimon who logged 655.37 miles...
Top Fifteen Spirit awards: (Based on posts on the RTW Feed) Aaron L Salvador, Michael Anderson, Brent Weigner, Danilo Purlia, Larry Allen, Asya Cabral, Lize Dumon, Roger Wright, Geoffrey Smith, Carmen Gair, Annie Conneau, Joseph Brazil, Vince Martignetti, Marnie Margolis, Willie Korir...
Best Single Run: Michael Wardian when he ran 184.5 miles in 36 hours 48 minutes 14 seconds on the C&O Canal Trail...
Notable Mentions: Boaz Kipyego logged 788.61 miles and came to the United States and placed fourth at the Twin City Marathon. Rosaline Nyawira was first female logging 454.37 miles. Brent Weigner (69) has been running races every weekend including running a marathon in another country Sri Lanka. He logged 258 miles. James Kalani has gotten back into running (this challenge motivating him) and has already run 4 miles at 5:33 pace. He logged 252 miles.
Ultra marathon star Gloria Nasr from France logged 237 miles. Rosaura Tennant ran both the Berlin and Chicago marathon during this Challenge. Becca Pizzi was first woman in the marathon run inside a NFL stadium in Boston...
"Everyone is a winner on our team," says Bob Anderson. "I can't wait to do this again." RTW Challenge 3 start Oct 29. (10/13/2018) ⚡AMP
Boaz Kipyego (26) started running in primary school. "I used to ran from home to school to and fro everyday which was almost 12km per day," says Boaz. He then started running at school and they discovered his talent. "I was the best runner in my school. When I finished primary school I got into the secondary school but my parents could not pay my fees and that was the end on my study." Boaz runs two or three times almost every day. In his second Run The World Challenge he has already run and logged 586 miles in 33 days which is ahead of what he did in the first challenge. "My best race was in Des Moines, Iowa in USA in 2016. I successfully won my first race in USA." The local newspaper the next morning wrote, "Boaz Kipyego crossed the finish line of the IMT Des Moines Marathon and just kept running. The Kenyan was so excited about winning his first marathon that he wanted to celebrate in front of many of his new American friends at Cowles Commons. So, draped in a Kenyan flag, he did a victory lap back toward the finish line. "America is fantastic — this is my first time in the U.S. This is my biggest win," Kipyego said after running 2:16:36. Boaz comes from a humble background. "I am training so hard to make my life better and so I can help other kids," he says. "Run the World gives me focus," Boaz says. (10/01/2018) ⚡AMP
On Friday evening, 17 runners participated in the first full and half marathon around the home turf of the New England Patriots. It was also the first marathon run entirely inside a NFL stadium. Participants in the half marathon ran just over 59 laps on the warning track surrounding the turf, while the full marathon participants ran 118 laps. The course is USA Track & Field (USATF) certified and a Boston Marathon qualifier. Runners enjoyed special appearances by Patriots cheerleaders and the end zone militia, in-stadium music, motivational videos on the HD video boards and other entertainment throughout the evening. “We are thrilled to be hosting our first marathon inside Gillette Stadium,” said Josh Kraft, president of the New England Patriots Foundation. “This is a really unique opportunity and this event will help us raise critical funds for the New England Patriots Foundation to benefit homeless shelter programs throughout the region.” The race was directed by Dave McGillivray who also is the Boston Marathon race director. 44-year-old Michael Wardian
placed first clocking 2:49:26. Michael had also won the marathon held inside Fenway Park a few months ago. Becca Pizzi was the first woman clocking 3:49. Both are also participating in the second Run The World Global Run Challenge and these miles bring Michael’s total to 384 miles run and logged since August 29. He is currently in 7th place. The team is running and logging enough miles to circle the globe (24,901 miles). (09/28/2018) ⚡AMP
Romance got Carmen Gair interested in (and eventually hooked on) running! "At school I was a bookworm, the academic type, not the athletic type and certainly not the running type," remembers 34-year-old Carmen. "That was until I met my high school sweetheart, a very experienced runner. I started tagging along to races with him just to have the chance to socialize with him afterwards." At first she just entered 10K fun runs but that soon changed. "I was soon bitten by the running bug and progressed to the half marathon. The high school romance is now long forgotten but I am still very much in love with running," she says. This love for running is why Carmen Gair entered the Run The World Challenge 2 and has already logged 94 miles in 30 days. Lize Dumon (pictured with Carmen in the white hat), the South African Run The World Challenge team leader told her about the challenge and Carmen signed up right away. Carmen pledged to run and log 25k (15.5 miles) weekly and at this point she has been doing 22 miles weekly. "I wouldn’t dream of not reaching the amount of k’s I pledged," she says. "The Run The World Challenge is fun. I love the social aspect, the people taking part, posting and commenting in the runner feed. And it is very motivating, I’ve certainly increased my usual mileage due to the challenge," says Carmen. Running is a very important part of her life. "At university I discovered just how much I needed regular running to clear my head and keep stress levels in check. To this day I cherish this precious me-time," Carmen says. "I also love the social aspect and the wonderful friends and connections I have made through running." Running keeps her fit, healthy and happy and she says she will continue to run for a long time! Asked about her goals? "At the moment I have got my sights set on running my first full marathon. The Run The World Challenge has contributed to that a lot by significantly increasing my mileage." Her husband and Carmen live high up on a beautiful mountain in a small village near the world famous Kruger National Park in South Africa. "I am a dietitian by profession and like most dietitians I love all things food-related, including cooking and eating," Carmen says. (09/27/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
Joel maina Mwangi
was born in a small village of Thika town, about one hour outside of Nairobi, Kenya. Joel says, "I was raised up in a difficult situation. Eating was 50-50 but by the grace of God i was sponsored for secondary education." Today the 33-year-old Joel is married and has two boys. "I always work hard to raise my boys in a good and better environment than i got," he says. "My school was 6km from home and I used to run to school for eight years (6-14) to avoid being late...otherwise I would be punished." In 1998 he took part in a 10000m and won it. "My sport teacher noticed I could run," Joel remembers. "He encourage me to start training and from there I started training every morning before school." He did not stop there. "I was the king of athletics." Joel is now a professional runner. "Racing sustain me and my family. It has enabled me to build a house and travel." Running has given him the opportunity to travel to different countries. "My first trip abroad was to Belgium. i stayed there for one and half month. I had a difficult time because i was not in good condition. I came back home with 10€ ($15). That day I will never forget. I lost money but I learned a lesson." Asked what is his secret to success Joel says, "I believe even if you are in good shape but mentally weak, I will defeat you. So I always tell my running mates to be strong mentally to conquer." He has been training in Austria, Hungary and now Italy. He says this about Italy. "Despite its low altitude I like it. The advantage for me is because I complete in many races and train with Italian runners here." He runs for the Dinamo Running Club. Asked why he joined the Run The World Challenge for a second time. "I like it...it motivates me. It brings runners from different corners of the world together. It helped me a lot this season as I worked more to try to be the leader. But Korir managed to be the leader for Challenge 1. Due to that...I will sponsor Willie Korir for his start number and transport from wherever he will be within Kenya for the 2018 Nairobi marathon," he says. Joel's personal records are: Marathon 2:14, 30kms 1:31, Half Marathon 1:01:16, 10km-28:26 (track), 5km 13:46, 3km 8:07 1-mile 4:06, 1km 2:28. "I am looking forward to be the best of the best. Don't tell me I am getting old..."old is Gold." In the first Run The World Challenge Joel logged 511.36 miles placing him third. So far on Challenge 2 he has logged 224.9 miles and he is in fourth place. Most recently (September 9) he placed third at the Minski Half Marathon
clocking 1:02:55. Photo: Joel (white jersey) running along side Charles Cheruiiyot Toroitich at the 2014 (Half) Marathon Solidarności in Poland. Joel clocked 1:01:16 (09/12/2018) ⚡AMP
Linda Sereno grew up with two older and two younger brothers. "I copied them, playing football, baseball and basketball. Later my oldest brother helped me take on running. I loved it," Linda says. "In high school, we had a fund raising event for our band to go to Ireland to compete in the Saint Patrick's Day parade in Dublin. We were sponsored for each lap we could run/walk in two hours," Linda remembers. She never stopped running for 2 hours and did 52 laps around the quarter mile track. "I love running, especially on trails, up and down mountains. I love the wind, the animals, and the scenery. I think, I space out, and I dream on those runs. I find my inner peace out in the mountains," she says. Asked about what is her secret to her success. "I think it's important to keep your core strong, stretch daily, and do strength exercises. I use my body weight to improve muscle tone rather than using weights. I do push ups, sit ups, planks, burpees, squats lunges, and stretches," 58-year-old Linda Sereno says. She tries to run three times per week, two days of track workouts and one long run." Last year she finished a 50 miler. "I was the second woman overall on a challenging hilly race with 9,500 feet of elevation change. Another challenge I accomplished was Boston to Big Sur. I wondered if I would have the endurance to complete both marathons without any injuries, and I did in 2011. The times were not exceptional, but I was pleased to have accomplished my goal," she says. Her husband, Kirk, is a surfer. He was a competitive swimmer and diver in high school and community college. Her daughter, Amy, is a successful runner and is an assistant coach at a local community college. Linda is currently a 1st/2nd grade Dual Immersion teacher, teaching English and Spanish. Why did she enter the Challenge for a second time. "Run the World Challenge can help motivate many people become more active in order to fulfill a global goal," Linda says. Linda has already posted 51 miles for this challenge. She also has run a lot of Double Racing Events. One of her best performances at age 55 was clocking 1:04:04 for the Pacific Grove Double Road Race 15k in 2015. She clocked 43:40 for the 10K leg and 20:23 for the 5k leg. This was age-graded at 87.07%. Photo: Linda with a dear friend and running buddy Lidia Santos (09/11/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
Running is very important to 48-year-old Marnie Margolis from Winnipeg, Canada. The mother of two (17 and 16), works at Bayer Healthcare and says, "I used to consistently power walk and do treadmill workouts. The workouts started getting easier and I was going longer. I then started adding inclines." Then one day a friend invited her to join her on a 5 mile run outside. "I said I would try," she remembers. "It went very well and there has not been any looking back. Before I turned 40 I decided it would be my goal to do a half marathon." That hooked her into the marathon world and participating in running events. How important is running to her? "It's just a given. It's part of my routine. It's the time where I can think and enjoy some quiet time. It also gives me a great outlet where I can have control, make goals and feel some accomplishment. It keeps me healthy and happy," she says. In the 2017 Manitoba Marathon Marnie was the 20th female to finish the full marathon and first in her age group. "In 2018 I ran in the infamous Boston Marathon- torrential downpour, 35 mph winds and 33 degrees. It was the first time I had traveled to participate in a marathon and it was an amazing experience," Marnie says. What does she think is the secret to her success? "I think consistency. It's just something I schedule in. I balance it with with circuit workouts and that has helped me be stronger and eliminate soreness post long runs. I don't always love running during, but once I cross the finish line or complete my run I can't wait to go again." This is Marnie's second Run The World Challenge. "I think the RTW challenge offers another fun way to enjoy the sport with other like minded runners. It's been great to focus on helping the team achieve the goal and it's really motivating to check the feed and see all the runners posting photos across the world in amazing spots and sharing their stories," Marnie Margolis says. She does try to get her kids to run with her but at least for now they are more into hockey, football and basketball. On September 9th she ran a 30K race on a tough day (wind and rainy) and finished in 2:28:21 which by the way is 7:59/mile pace. Marnie has logged in 76 miles for the Run The World Challenge 2 since August 29 which is good enough for fourth female. (09/10/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
Rosaline Nyawira started running at an early age of eight in primary school. She started out as a sprinter running the 80m and100m. "Later my talent was polished by my games teacher and I also ran 200m and 400m," Rosaline says. "After finishing my secondary education, I improved my personal bests to 12sec in 100 and 24sec in 200m," she says. Later in 2016 she moved from the track to the road. Rosaline says, "To me, running is my full time career that keeps me motivated, focused, refreshed and healthy. Apart from running, I have an idea of starting my own business once I have enough capital." But right now she's focused on racing. She says, "I always train hard and smart to win easy. I am always focused and I avoid anything that can lead me to fail." Asked why she joined the Run The World Challenge. She says, "I think It's the best group to join because it encourage and motivate my career. Actually it's the best global group to join and learn as I socialize with my fellow athlete's around the globe." Rosaline is a Kenya athlete living and training in Durban, South Africa currently. She has run a 34:30 10K and a 1:10:45 half marathon. On September 2 she ran her first full marathon clocking 2:49 on a tough course. (09/10/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
Gloria Nasr was always active as a kid growing up in Lebanon. She did Kung Fu, worked out at the gym and did bodybuilding. "Upon arriving in Paris in 1995, I started riding my bike about 50k (31 miles) per day," Gloria remembers. "Then one day in 2002, a friend who wanted to lose weight asked me to accompany her for a jog. It was love at first sight and since then I have not stopped," she says. "Running is an integral part of my life. It's my moment of relaxation where I find myself within myself." As soon as she started running, she had a dream of running from her adopted country France to her homeland in Lebanon. A Transcontinental race of 4150km. "I realized this dream in 2013," Gloria says. She ran 50km a day across nine countries for three months and 10 days. "Those were the three most beautiful months of my life." She has also participated five times in the Marathon des Sables of Morocco. This is a six-day 156 mile ultra marathon which has been called the toughest foot race on earth. Gloria says, "I am currently preparing a new challenge, a transcontinental race from Paris to Beijing a distance of 10000km (6,214 miles).” Asked what is her secret to success, she says, “I always say that the most important thing is envy. with envy, courage, perseverance we can succeed many things. I also do not put pressure on training and despite my love for running, I keep a certain distance. I do not have an addiction to running." So why did she join our Run The World Challenge? "It's great to bring runners together from around the world." Gloria is a doctor, PMR, physical medicine and rehabilitation. She is French Lebanese, living in Paris. The 48-year-old has run 40:27 for 10K, 1:24 for 20k, 1:34 half marathon and 3:14 for the marathon. (09/09/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
73-year-old Sheldon Gersh partiicipated in the first Run The World Challenge and has taken on the second one too. The Senior Vice President at Morgan Stanley has worked there for 47 years, he loves to travel with his wife and one thing he always finds time to do is run. So how did it all begin? He played soccer for Oregon and running was a necessity to survive the miles covered in practices and games. "In the off season I would run to stay fit," says Sheldon. "Once college was completed, I knew that I was going into the army and I needed to be very fit." He handled army training well and says "it was a piece of cake." The summer before he entered the army, he ran with a high school cross country team which was ranked number one that year. "I ran the years I was in the Army, including my adventure in Vietnam." Once he left the army he continued to run. "It made me feel so good. I thought about playing adult soccer but it was such a hastle to get together a team." At the same time he had a friend that made him a bet that he had to finish in the top half and under an hour in his first Bay to Breakers road race in San Francisco. "I ran almost everyday plus played soccer with a team I coached," he remembers. "I won the bet." For Sheldon running has the same priority as eating and sleeping. "Most people don’t look at it that way but I do. Running is extremely important to me, not much can prevent me from doing it, definitely not the weather," he says. Two highlights? Running the Boston marathon back in the 70's and placing in the top 100 at the Bay to Breakers (12k) clocking 43 minutes. He also says, "I had a goal when I turned 60 to run a mile under six minutes. A friend, Rich stiller trained me." Sheldon ran 5:47. He wants to continue running forever but says he "doesn't want to overdo it. I just think running makes you feel better. I look at so many people who look and act much older than me. I feel like they are my parents," he says. He keeps fit by doing more than one activity a day. He also swims, does boxing and spins. "My long term goal is to continue running forever," says Sheldon Gersh. (08/31/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
I have been running since 1962 and I needed some motivation. I am participating in the Run The World Challenge 2 event that started August 29. I did the first one that started July 4 and I ran an average of 5.1 miles per day for 37 days. Before this I was doing about three miles per day. That got me in better shape for Challenge 2. On day 2 of Run The World Challenge 2 I just ran more miles in one day than I have in probably two years. I just completed 13.21 miles broken up into three parts. I did an easy two mile warm-up and then stopped for a light lunch (bowl of tomato soup and a roll). After about a half hour break I ran 7.39 miles at 8:52/mile pace running the last mile just under 8 minutes. I then drank a bottle of water and changed my shirt. After about twenty minutes I ran 3.82 miles at 9:14/mile pace. I started off really slow and picked it up. Why am I tell you all of this? Because today I would have most likely have run only two to three miles easy but since I am doing the Run The World Challenge 2 I did this instead. I did it for me and our team. The mission behind the Challenge is to celebrate running, inspire others, complete the challenge of logging enough miles to circle the globe and to motivate team members. I can say without hesitation that I was motivated today solely because of the Run The World Challenge. But you draw your own conclusion. I am the team caption. I am the guy who came up with the idea. I have run over 1000 races and have probably run over 75,000 miles. I founded and published Runner's World magazine for 18 years. I have been around running for a long time. If you are looking for something to help motivate you, this would be a good event to get involved with. There are single virtual events but nothing like what we are doing. This is a team event. It takes a big team (no bigger than 175). The team also needs to run and log miles in at least ten different countries and have runners in all age groups from 17 and under to 70 plus. I am 70-years-old and the Run The World Challenge 2 has me so motivated. I run for me but it feels good to also be doing it for the team as well. (Photo one of Bob Anderson fav places to run is in Paris. This photo taken two years ago.) (08/30/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
For the first half of Joyce Lee's life, the only sports she did was swimming and gymnastics. "I never would have thought in a million years I would come to enjoy running," says 37-year-old Joyce. In college she spent her summers teaching private swim lessons. "I needed another form of exercise, so I turned to running since it seemed like a simple way of getting in some cardio. I didn't own any running sneakers so I just wore my gym shoes and set out to run for an hour in my hilly neighborhood. I had no idea how far I went, or what my pace was; the goal was to just keep moving," she remembers. At first she was only using running to stay fit but that changed. "Running has been a multi-faceted way to maintaining my overall physical, mental and emotional health. Getting the heart pumping has an amazing way to bringing issues to the front of mind for me, and allowing for some creativity to work its magic. I am able to sort out problems, formulate new ideas and work through painful patches of my life. Running has become an essential part of my life," Joyce says. On Juanurary 1, 2013 she decided she would run at least a mile every day for a year. "I often like to fly by the seat of my pants and live with little planning, so this presented a very interesting challenge for me. Any sensible person would carve out time in their morning, wake up early and fit their daily run then, but that wasn't me. In my first year, I flew over 75,000 miles across the Pacific and around the country for business, weddings and of course a handful of road races. The time zone changes, fatigue from travel, unpredictable weather, lack of facilities required me to get very creative with how I would fit my mileage in. I have run on a cruise ship track, airport terminals, stairs, and even a hotel hallway on my birthday at midnight. I am now into my sixth year of running every single day," she says with pride. She likes the idea of the Run The World Challenge and this is why she signed up. "It is a wonderful way for runners near and far to work together as a team, joined by their passion, to work towards a common goal. This is an awesome way for runners to socialize online and cheer each other on," says Joyce. Recently she placed first in the 50 mile Run De Vous Ultra. "I was adequately heat trained from having served as crew and pacer at the Badwater 135 Ultramarathon in Death Valley, I was able to successfully run the entire 50 mile distance. The heat reached as high as 101 degrees in Morgan Hill (California), but I was able to outrun the second place runner by over two hours. It felt incredible to cross the finish as first overall winner rather than first female, something I never imagined I'd ever experience. I'll never forget it," she says. Some of her PR's include 20:02 for 5K, 1:34:20 for the half, 3:27:20 for the marathon and 29:41:23 for 100 miles. (08/29/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
Pete Magill (bib 105) has always loved to run. "It was my favorite part of sports, whether I was playing kickball, football, or actually running a race," says Pete. When he went to high school, it was no surprise that he decided to go out for cross country. "I caught the bug. I was a runner. And once a runner, always a runner," he says. Running is important for Pete in its own unique way. "It’s obviously a huge part of my life. Not only do I run every day (sometimes twice a day) when I’m in a competition mode, but it’s a big part of how I make my living. I write about running, both in magazines and books. And I coach runners, ranging in age and distance from high school sprinters to senior marathoners," Pete says. Running isn’t simply a daily habit for Pete like taking out the trash or paying bills either. "It’s its own thing. It’s the time of day when I set the rest of life aside and simply enjoy being alive," explains Pete. When he was in his 30's he was living an out-of-control life. "It was running that rescued me, that centered me, and that has allowed me to live a productive and sane life in my 40s and 50s." He has written four running books. "I strive to give the reader accurate, up-to-date, and useful information. And I try to debunk all the false information that gets in the way of smart, informed training and racing." He made his living as a screenwriter for much of his 30s, and he learned to make every line count. "I try to bring that to my running books. Every line should tell the reader something. Every paragraph should present some fresh idea with research or personal experience to back it up." His new book, SpeedRunner, is about the components of basic speed, strength, and agility. It explains how runners generate all three and the best way to train in order to improve them. "My next book is titled, Fast 5K: 25 Keys to Your Best Race, and it tells the reader everything I know about training and racing for the 5K." He thinks all runners should create a smart training plan, and then follow it. "That’s easier said than done. For starters, simply redoing a training program you’ve done before isn’t a “smart plan.” Every time we start training, we begin from a different point. We’re older. Or our fitness isn’t the same. Or we simply trained incorrectly in the past and need to steer a different course this time around." I asked Pete why he entered the Run The World Challenge. "I think that Bob Anderson has once again hatched an idea that only improves the world of running—the runner’s world, if you will. The key to any good idea is that it be easy to understand, so that participants can clearly see what their contribution will be. A goal of compiling enough miles to run around the world? Yep, that fits the bill! And having runners from all age groups and requiring that miles from some team members be logged in different countries? Again, this is a truly great idea for helping to solidify the community of runner. Count me in,” says Pete.Here are of few of Pete’s career highlights: 2016 Inductee: USATF (USA Track & Field) Masters Hall of Fame. Fastest-ever American age 50+ at 5K (15:01) and 10K (31:11); 2nd fastest for Half Marathon (1:10:19); 14:45 5K at age 49 a world record. His list of achievements is massive. His knowledge of running, his passion for the sport and his achievements sets him apart but yet 57-year-old Pete Magill is always there ready to share all his secrets to help others achieve their goals. (08/28/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
"I think the Run The World Challenge is really cool because I get to connect with people who are doing the same thing for different reasons, and people from around the world,” say Henry Ward
who is doing the challenge for the second time. The Run The World Global Run Challenge ('challenge') is all about running. It is a celebration of running. The challenge is a good motivator and many have said they have run more miles (k's) because of the challenge. The challenge inspires others to start or re-start their running. The challenge is about setting a goal and completing it. “Our first team started on July 4 and 36 days 23 hours 13 minutes later our team of 175 (which is now the max size of a team) finished running and logging 24,901 miles (40,074K),” says team Caption, 70-year-old Bob Anderson
who logged 189 miles. “Our team ran miles in 30 different countries. The youngest on our team was 11 and the oldest 82 and I am proud of all of them.” Participants logged in as many as 797.37 miles down to 2.49 miles. Run The World Challenge 2 starts Wednesday August 29. You can sign up at any time but once 175 people log at least a mile, our team is full. “Signing up is just the first step of the process,” says Bob Anderson. “You are not on the team until you log your first mile.” For this challenge, we will be doing a celebration lap in Pacific Grove on September 30 at the Pacific Grove 10k and Double Road Race event. “We encourage everyone to join us and come run one of our races too,” says Bob. Get signed up and logged your first mile starting Wednesday August 29 to make the team. The maximum size team is 175. “We are running and logging enough miles to circle the globe,” says Michael Wardian
who is doing the challenge for the second time. That is 24,901 miles. All ages and abilities are invited. Every mile count. (Photo) Team members Bob Anderson, Lisa Wall and Owen Wall. (08/26/2018) ⚡AMP
won the Boston Marathon
twice. He was leading the 1983 New York City Marathon at 26 miles until Rod Dixon caught him and Geoff finished just seconds behind. After taking a break from running due to some injuries, Geoff has now run every day recently passing 700. While doing the first Run The World Challenge he nearly doubled his regular mileage. That team logged in 24,901 miles in 36 days 23 Hours 13 Minutes. That’s enough miles to circle the globe. “We are putting together our second team now and we hope to finish in 30 days,” Bob Anderson Run The World team Caption says. Miles on the first team were run in 30 countries. Youngest on the team was age 11 and the oldest was 82. Team members logged in as many as 798 miles to as few as 3. “I increased my average weekly miles from 20 to 35,” says 70-year-old Bob Anderson. “The Run The World Challenge just gives more purpose to run a few more miles everyday,” he says. There are a few more spots available. You can continue with your regular routine and just take another minute or so to log in your miles on your My Best Runs account. “I am looking forward to doing this challenge again,” says Geoff Smith. Runners of all ages and abilities and throughout the world have already signed up. How about you? Use this link to sign up: https://mybestruns.com/goal.php Join Geoff, Dave, Bob, Lize, Aaron, Owen, Lisa, Becca... (08/24/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD CHALLENGE: 41-year-old Victor Reynoso loves to run and to run races. He logged 157 miles in the first challenge and is anxious to get started again and do more. He is a single dad with a 8-year-old daughter. "She is very smart and is my world, motivation and my little teacher," Victor says. Victor started running in 2000. He was invited to run with a group at the company and he got hooked right away. He says, "Running makes me happy." He is an apprentice electrician, owns his own house and, "I love to spend my time off with my daughter and make new friends and share how I happy I am." His range of distances starts with the 5k and goes up to 50k. His PR for 5k is 17:49, Half is 1:24, Full 3:10:57 and 50k is 4:11:08. On July 28th he finished second overall and first master at the Urban ICT 50K posting his PR. That is 8:05/mile pace. What is his secret? "When your legs can't run anymore, run with your heart." Run The World Challenge 2 starts August 29. (08/22/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD CHALLENGE: Asya Cabral discovered running in junior high when she joined the Track & Field team. "I was a sprinter and ran the 100 and 200 meter dash, 4x100 meter relay, and did the long jump. Although much different from the endurance running I do now, I enjoyed training and competition," says 45-year-old Asya. She lives in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and has been running for 13 years. The former sprinter has since run eight marathons and 18 half marathons. One of her running highlights was qualifying for the 2017 Boston Marathon at the Chicago Marathon. "Chicago was my fourth marathon, but first one I trained to Boston Qualify. I needed a 3:45:00 and ran a 3:33:41," she says. "When I ran my first marathon in 2014, I never envisioned being able to Boston Qualify. That 3:34 seemed so unreachable at the time," Asya continued. Running holds a special place in her heart and is a priority. "I'm a better person because of my running. It teaches me life lessons. Running is my quiet time with God where I gain wisdom and strength for my day. I use those lessons to motivate, encourage and inspire others to pursue their dreams and help them believe in what seems impossible." Her secret to success? "is to stay humble and realize that my strength, my health, any accomplishment, my ability to work hard, and each breath I take is a gift from God. I don't take these things for granted because they can be taken away at any time," she says. Asya was on the first Run the World team, she was 7th female and logged in 208.27 miles within the 36 days 23 hours and 13 minutes it took the team of 175 to log 24,901 miles. "I think the Run the World Challenge is fun, motivational and inspiring. Participating in the last challenge showed me just how much it has encouraged people to run more miles than they have been. It's also a nice way to learn about and communicate with runners all over the world," Asya says. The next Run The World Challenge starts August 29. (08/21/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
The Run The World Global Run Challenge 1 presented by My Best Runs started July 4, 2018. The goal was to run and log 24,901 Miles in the shortest posible time. "The mission was to celebrate running, motivate our team, inspire others and complete the challenge," says team caption Bob Anderson.
The team of 175 active runners finished in 36 Days 23 Hours and 13 Minutes on Thursday night August 9th at 11:13pm (PDT). "It was an amazing event and I can not wait until the next one starting August 29," says Geoff Smith (team member and two time Boston Marathon winner).
"Everyone on our team was a winner and deserve an award," says Bob Anderson. "Here are our special awards just announced today. Congrats to these winners and our entire team."
Outstanding achievement - Frank Bozanich age 74 logged 475 miles.
Most Inspiring - Aaron L. Salvador from the little country of Palau logged 296.4 miles and posted a comment and photo everyday. Shared with Geoff Smith who also posted a comment and photo everyday logged 240.5 miles (which is almost double what he was doing prior to the Challenge)
Most Motivating - Grace Padilla (US) logged 327.11 miles posted a comment and creative photo everyday. Grace who is 47 placed 11th overall and was first female.
Best Performance - Willie Korir from Kenya not only did he log the most miles (797.37) he also ran one of his workouts at 4:37/mile pace for 9.13 miles.
Five Most Inspiring stories - based on their story posted on My Best Runs: (this award goes to the five who received the most views on My Best Runs) Michael Wardian (1,677 views), Benn Griffin (1,461 views), Swetha Amit (1,431 views), Roy Pirrung (1,241 views) and Kiranpal Singh Dhody (1,088 views)
Most Inspiring Photo - Grace Padilla´s July 5th photo training on the track in Mammoth Lakes, California (featured photo).
Best Youngest performance - Owen Wall age 11 who logged 34.2 miles including running 8.1 miles in one day at 9:59 pace during his longest ever run. Shared with Elliot Daniels age 14 who ran and logged 184.45 miles and ran 5:47/mile pace for six miles in the Wharf to Wharf race in Santa Cruz, California.
Best Oldest performance - Libby James age 82 who logged 81.81 miles (rounds up to 82). Shared with 74-year-old Frank Bozanich who ran and logged in 475 miles.
Top Fifteen Spirit awards (based on coment and photo posted regularly that appeared on the Run The World Feed): Aaron L Salvador, Grace Padilla, Shawn Whalen, Michael Anderson, Brent Weigner, Danilo Purlia, Larry Allen, Rosaura Tennant, Asya Cabral, Kati Toivanen, Lize Dumon, Roger Wright, Abbey Cannon, Geoffrey Smith, and Pulkit Singh.
Best Single Run - Michael Wardian when we ran 100.5 miles in 30 hours 23 minutes to place 11th on July 21 at Hardrock 100.
Notable Mentions - Dave Mcgillivray logged 164.52 miles (Boston Marathon Director), Becca Pizzi logged 226.17 miles (Holds the record for running seven Marathons. Seven days on seven Continents), Liz Dumon had never run 150 Miles in 30 days before this challenge, Boaz Kipqego from Kenya logged 588.52 miles and placed second, JR Mintz (age 52) logged the most miles by an American with 480.86 miles, Paul Shimon (age 71) logged 390.71 miles placed 6th overall and was third American, Harpal Singh Gill was first runner from India logging 331.66 miles placing 10th overall, Sam Tada was first runner from Japan logging 237.30 miles placing 29th overall. Malin Andersson co-owner of World´s Marathons logged in 77.67 miles and Will Adams who logged 51.58 miles mostly all plogging (picking up trash while running).
Our next Run The World Global Run Challenge starts August 29. There is a $25 entry fee to help cover expenses unless you can not afford it and then it will be waived. (08/16/2018) ⚡AMP
The first ever Run The World team have run and logged enough miles to circle the Global. A team of 175 strong from around the world came together and not only covered 24,901 miles but they took the time to logged this many miles in 36 Days 23 Hours 13 Minutes. The team ran miles in 30 different countries. The youngest person on the team was Owen Wall, age 11 and the oldest was Libby James, age 82. Willie Korir from Kenya logged the most miles with 797.37. Grace Padilla from the US posted the most for females with 327.11 miles. The purpose of the Run The World Challenge was to celebrate running, motivate the team, inspire others and complete the goal. “Our Mission was accomplished,” says Run The World team leader Bob Anderson
. The next start date is August 29 and it is hoped this record will be broken. An active team can have a maximum of 175. (08/10/2018) ⚡AMP
RUN THE WORLD: Ravindra G Raput started running January 31, 2016. He weighed close to 200 pounds (90kgs) and felt tired quiet often. "My doctor suggested walking and jogging and I took his advice," says Ravindra. In addition to running he also took up cycling. He lost 14 kg (30 pounds). "I observed that I felt fresh, energetic, active. The spark of fitness got enlightened in me and there was no looking back after that," he says. 40-year-old Ravindra lives and works in Pune, India. He has participated in over 100 marathons since Feb of 2016 and as his passion drew he wanted to encourage others. "I realized that fitness is not just for an individual but for the whole society and community to take up fitness activities." he says. It began in his home and he encouraged his wife and 14-year-old daughter to take up running and cycling. "Next were my colleagues and slowly we had a team participating in various marathons and cycling events," Ravindra says. "Today my family and I continue our work of spreading awareness around health, fitness and healthy living. I'm linked to multiple campaigns such as Cycle2Work which encourages people to cycle to work on a daily basis and reduce the overall carbon foot print,” he says. "Thanks Bob Anderson and My Best Runs for organizing such an unique event for the world," he says. "Run The World gives us precious qualities like hard work, dedication, passion, will power, tenacity and Bob Anderson has given us continued motivation," says Ravindra. (08/08/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: Benn Griffin parents were runners. "My parents went on running dates in the 80s," says Benn. "I guess that was the start of me. Growing up I ran on the weekends with my mom and dad, usually three miles, and I did a 5k or two," he says.
The movie Forrest Gump came out when he was in third or fourth grade. "Everyone called me Forrest because I could just run and run and run." Running defines him. He has run every day since December 28, 2012.
"I believe that running is a universal sport that crosses geographic, political, economic, spiritual, and physical boundaries. It unites us. Anyone can do it. For the most part I just like to run," says Benn.
He has run races as short as a mile and as long as 72 hours (188 miles). He has run 91 marathons and ultras. "In May I won the open division in a 12 hour ultra. It was my sixth time at that race, I'm a creature of habit."
He does not think there is a secret to success. "It's just relentless hard work, persistence, mixed with a little bit of stupidity," he says.
Benn started the ultrarunning community in the Berkshires and is a ultra race director. "Together with two friends we started with just three races, but then I added two more, so it's a five race summer series."
Benn is a cross country coach and a sixth grade geography teacher. A highlight of his coaching was watching his girls have two undefeated seasons in 2015 and 2017. He teaches at a low income charter school where 92% of the students are first generation college students.
"My sister and father are educators, as were my paternal grandparents and my aunt. So you could say, like running, it's in the blood." Running is something that grounds him and helps him self-medicate.
"My favorite quote of all time comes from a guy named Marc Davis: "All it takes is all you got." We already have everything we need to be successful. We just have to tap into it and unlock that potential," says Benn Griffin who has already logged in 309.65 miles for the Run The World Global Run Challenge that started July 4. (08/08/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: 33-year-old Julie Delle Donne Voisse works at the reception of a Nice Parisian hôtel. She started running before her 30th birthday. "I wanted to prove to myself that I could do something "athletic", even though I have never been a fit girl," says Julie. "I started with a 10-15 minute run." After a few weeks she could easily run up to a hour. Running is very important to Julie. "Taking time for myself, is good for body and mind," she says. "It’s free and accessible anywhere, just need shoes and a few free minutes. I tried other activity but I never had this freedom." Julie is married and has a seven year old boy. Across the street from the hotel where she works is the Seine river. "I like running in Paris, along the Seine early morning when the city sleeps, or late evening in public gardens to admire the city," she says. Besides training, Julie also likes to run races and looks forward to collect the medal and hang it on her board! Why did she enter this challenge? " Running is an individual sport but we share so much between runners. This challenge is a good motivation around the borders." Julie has posted 16.16 miles so far for the Run The World Global Run Challenge. "I met Julie on our trip to Paris in May," says Bob Anderson. "I was impressed by the passion she has for running. I told her about our challenge and she signed up right away." (08/07/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
The Run The World Challenge is one of the longest running events on the planet. “Our team will log in enough miles to circle the world, that is 24,901 miles,” says team leader Bob Anderson
. A team can not be no larger than 200 active runners. “Our team needed members to run miles in at least 20 different countries (we have logged in miles in 29 countries). We also had to at least have one runner in each age group (14 and under, 15-19, 20-29, 30-39,40-49, 50-59, 60-69, 70-79 and 80 plus). We met all these Run The World Challenge standards,” says Bob. The goal was to do this in 30 days. “What we did not know is that with a team this size, things happen, injuries, work and family situations, life challenges, or just running out of time to log. So after 30 days our team has logged in 19,600 miles,” Bob says. This team is 78.7% of the way around the globe. “Our team of 163 active runners are amazing.” Willie Korir from Kenya is the leader and has been running two to four times per day to login his 630 miles. That is 21 miles per day. Jen Baylis from the US has logged in 465.34 miles with Grace Padilla right behind her with 464 miles. 25 members of the team has logged in 200 miles or more. 45 have logged 150 miles or more and 85 a hundred or more. “One of our team members, Michael Wardian (photo) logged in 100.5 miles in one day. No, we are not finished. We are not finished until we reach 24,901 miles,” says Bob. Maybe during the next challenge a team will reach 24,901 miles in 30 days. The next Run The World Challenge starts August 29. “In the meantime we are continuing until we reach our goal. We are hoping to reach it within 40 days or in ten more days,” says Bob Anderson. (08/02/2018) ⚡AMP
RUN THE WORLD: Henry Ward has been sober since November 17, 2008 and after his son was born in March of 2012 he noticed he was becoming squirrelly. "Even though I wasn't drinking or using," Henry says. "I became restless. Sort of like a dry drunk. I knew I needed to do something." He was going to visit a friend and Henry asked what they were going to do. "My friend was thinking about running a 8k race. He said he would run if I did. I said sign me up! I didn't even know how far an 8k was," Henry remembers. "I hated every step of that race, and vowed never to run again. Every time a runner past me, I was angry. I honestly wanted to trip or elbow all runners I saw. But when I finished, I received a glass medallion. I also had a feeling that I will never forget. A feeling of accomplishment, and happiness, that prompted me to seek out another race as we drove back to my friend's house." Henry signed up for another 5k the following weekend and then a 4 miler. He was hooked. Henry is from Boston and currently lives in Tempe, Arizona. He is married and has a 6-year-old son. "Family is always first, running comes second," he says. He is a chef by trade. "I get to sweat, lift things and log 30,000 steps at work alone! Plus eat! I love to eat. I eat 4000 calories a day," Henry says. "I run to survive, to help me deal with life on life's terms. When I run and exercise I feel alive and it helps my day flow. If I didn't find running I would be a neurotic mess." He loves how he feels during and after running. "The Runner's high, and endorphin kick was like no other. I am thankful that I found running, and it has changed my life for the better. Not only does it keep me sober and it helps me feel balanced," he says. He believes that anyone can change, if they want to. "If I can change, anyone can! I have come along way, but know that I still have a lot of work to do on my personal character defects." He moved up from the 5K to doing ultras. In 2017 he completed the 250K six day stage race, 4deserts Patagonia. In 2018 he did the Boston Quad which is running the Boston Marathon four consecutive times. "The official marathon was number four. We had snow, freezing rain, 50 mile an hour winds and torrential downpours," Henry says. He wants to help inspire others and motivate many along the way. That is one of the reasons he joined the Run The World Challenge. "I think the challenge is really cool because I get to connect with people who are doing the same thing for different reasons, and people from around the world." He has two 100 mile races coming up and he hopes to qualify for the 2019 Badwater 135 race in death valley. (08/01/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: Malin Andersson has been running with her parents since she could walk. "My brother and I biked next to my parents while they ran, then we started running with them and later they were biking next to us while we were running," says 31-year-old Malin who lives outside of Stockholm, Sweden. She is co-owner of an important running website. "World's Marathons is an international marketplace for running events. We help bring more international runners to running events," she says. "We are driven by a team of dedicated tech and business talents based out of Sweden with offices in Lisbon and Jamaica." She says she runs today just for herself to take good care of herself. "I get energy spreading through my entire body when I run. I love running mostly without feeling any pressure of having to perform," she says. "At this point, I am not clocking myself since I am high performing in my business projects. I enjoy running and love being out on the trails in the Swedish woods. The Swedish woods is one of my favorite place to run." “Malin and I met in Paris in May,” says Bob Anderson. “We decided to work together on several running related projects (My Best Runs and World’s Marathons).” They did not talk about the Run The World Challenge because it had not been "born" yet. "I think it is amazing how Bob Anderson have made Run The World Global Run Challenge happen in such a short time and being able to set this up with all these enthusiastic passionate people joining," Malin says. (Photo taken during a meeting in Paris May 2018. Malin, Jean-Loup Fenaux (founder of Ahotu - an important running website) and Bob Anderson. Earlier Malin and Bob met up with Paris Running Tours and ran from Notre Dame to the Eiffel Tower. (07/31/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: "Running is my social network. Pretty much everyone that I'm connected to I met through running," says Dave Ross. But it didn’t start this way. As a kid he was pretty much a nerd, very shy and definitely a bookworm, not athletic at all. "I turned out for the cross country team my freshman year of high school to make friends," he says. He ended up being a four year letterman in cross country and team captain his senior year and was awarded a scholarship to run cross country in college. Running has remained a major part of his life. "I don't think that I'd miss training if I couldn't run, but I'd definitely miss racing. Running is an outlet for my highly competitive personality. I love racing and watching others race. My knowledge of the sport gives me access to getting hired to help with commentary for some of the best races and track meets in the world," says Dave. In 1996 he ran 2:36:57 at the Portland Marathon training 50 miles weekly. Some of Dave's best times include 15:35 5K, 53:54 10 miles, and 1:12:57 for the half marathon. Dave works for Kaiser Permanente in the Portland area. He has two grown children. "My wife Stephanie (also a runner) and I live in Beaverton, Oergon and we do a lot of our running around Nike World Headquarters." I asked him about the present running scene in the US. "I think that it's on a pretty impressive upswing. Now that there is drug testing that's leveling the international playing field Americans are more competitive than ever," he says. "Folks are catching on and following the idea of structured training groups. The Bowerman Track Club, The Nike Oregon Project and groups like the Brooks Hansons are leading the way in American development." So why did Dave join our Run The World Challenge? "I think that it's a cool idea. It's neat to see so many people come together toward a common goal," Dave commented. (07/31/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
Day 27 of of Run The World Global Run Challenge is coming to an end soon. Our Mission is to celebrate running, motivate our team, inspire others and reach our goal. As of right now our team has logged in 17,432 miles. Our team ranging in age from 11 to 82 have run miles in 29 different countries. 26-year-old Willie Korir from Kenya has logged in the most miles with 553.18. The top American is 74-year-old Frank Bozanich who has logged 407 miles. Jen Bayliss (US) is the top female with 265.24 miles. Grace Padilla (also 47) is close behind with 238.99 miles. 74 of our team has hit the magic number, which is to log in 100 or more miles in 30 days and we have ten more who can reach that goal too. The 5 mile a day average (which is 150 miles in 30 days) already has 34 in that group and another ten can achieve that mark as well. There are a lot of stats to look at and we will share more later. I am so proud of what our team has achieved. There are so many wonderful inspiring stories to tell. Our Run The World feed and our My Best Runs profile tell just some of the stories. Many more to tell. The big question is, are we going to make our goal? We still could, but 30 days is up at the end of day Thursday. In any case, we are going to reach our goal. It could take us 40 days but we are going to do it. Once we hit our goal we will record the days, hours and minutes (based on PDT) that it took us. This will be the standard that we will go after on our next Run The World Challenge starting August 29. In fact it would be fun to have two teams to challenge each other. In any case, we are going to run a celebration lap (about 400m) this Sunday at our Golden Gate Double 8K and Ujena 5k/3k event. It will be right before our awards. We still need 7,477 miles to reach our goal. Sounds like a big number by end of day Thursday or even by Sunday but I am hopeful. Thanks for your support. Bob Anderson
, Run The World Challenge Team Leader. (07/30/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: Kiranpal Singh Dhody (62) has lived in Mumbai India since 1976. He is married and has three children. "My son is now 25 and has recently joined me in my business," says Kiranpal, "giving me much wanted relief to concentrate on my running." Kiranpal was a fitness freak from an early age and would jog regularly in the morning but never did any racing. "Some boys, seeing me running on the tracks for hours every day, told me to take part in road races." So at the age of 60 he started running races and started winning prizes. "At that point I realized that I have some endurance and power within me and can compete well with the other runners." He has participated in many road races 10k, 21k and has placed in his age-group many times. "My Personal Best being Airtel Delhi Half Marathon in Nov 2016 clocking 1:43:40 getting 4th place in my age category." The same year he ran the New Delhi 10k Challenge clocking 46:20 a personal best. "But the one I love most is SCMM ( Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon/Half Marathon) the biggest marathon event of India," he says. In 2017 he finished fifth in his age-group clocking 1:49:24 for the half. "Since the last two years I started participating in Masters Athletics Championship and won Silver and Bronze medals in 10,000m and 5,000m and got selected for the Asia Masters Athletic Championship." Running is very important to him. "I get up every morning at 4:30 am and reach the tracks by 5:45am to start my daily practice by 6:00 am." So what is his secret I asked? "Secret to my success lies in being regular at the Sports Authority of India ground every morning at 6:00 am, except Sunday (being my rest day), dedication to running, determination and punctuality. Not eating any junk or processed foods or aerated drinks. I eat a lot of fruits in the morning and also in the evening, I eat green vegetables, sprouts, dry fruits, nuts, and juices." I asked him why he joined our challenge. "Mr. Bob, you have done a very good thing by creating this Run The World event where we can all become examples for the young and old people so that they can also start running and thus improve their lifestyles," Kiranpal said. After getting his MBA and working for his brother for awhile he started his own business, Automobile Spare parts. "We are a wholesaler trading in spare parts for vehicles. My business is about 40K away from my residence and every morning after my workout is over I have to travel by local train. The train is crowded and takes over an hour to reach my destination. Being tired, many times I sleep in the train and do the same thing on my return back home in the evening." (07/29/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: Courtney Heiner didn't make the high school basketball team, so she decided to do track instead. "I started off as a 300 meter hurdler my sophomore year," says Courtney. "By my senior year, I started to really have a passion for running." Her coach convinced her to run cross country the fall of 2008. "That season we made it to the California State meet with only five varsity runners. It was definitely an experience that I will never forget," she remembers. She later met Jeanette Powless, the women’s distance coach at American River College. "Jeanette really took me under her wing and showed me how to steeplechase. After two years at American River, Jeanette helped me get a scholarship to Cal State Stanislaus and put me in contact with coach Taylor. "There she became a five time All American and a National Champion in the women's 1500m. Now Courtney nuns for the Strava Track Club coached by Dena Evans. " Dena is always so positive and we both know there’s more in the tank. Hopefully, over this next year I can work hard to get one step closer to my goals." Running is extremely important to her however, "I think its always important to maintain a balance. During heavy training blocks I run six days a week. I almost always take Sundays off. This helps me recover physically and mentally for the week," she says. I asked her what is her goal? "My ultimate running goal would be to qualify for USA Outdoor Championships in the steeplechase. There’s no doubt that it seems like a lofty goal, and sometimes it feels so far out of reach, but if you don’t dream big, then you miss out on a lot of incredible opportunities along the way. "Besides running and coaching she also works full time at her family business, they pretty much put a logo on anything. "It’s called A4 Promotions and we specialize in branded merchandise," she says. Courtney and her husband also enjoy spending time in the mountains. So why did she join this challenge? "The Run the World Challenge is so cool and its really neat to be apart of it. It’s so unique and that’s what really attracted me to it. Its incredible to bring runners together to run 24,901 miles collectively. It’s been awesome to read about other runners and their story." (07/28/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: Kati Toivanen started running in 1981, when she arrived in America as an exchange student from Finland. "I was hosted by a wonderful, loving family in Williston, Vermont," Kati says. "In an effort to connect with other students at the high school, I joined the cross-country team. I was not very good, but worked hard and improved." That started her life-long fondness of running. She returned to the the US to attend college and graduate school, eventually building an art career and a family. "I never raced again until my son's elementary school had a fund raising 5K in 2013. That, and my elliptical breaking, got me started on a path to losing 30 pounds and lacing up for regular running again," she says. Running has now become an important part of her daily routine. "I like it for its physical and emotional benefits, but increasingly for the social connections." She belongs to the very active running community in Kansas City. "Runs fly by as we chat away. I have also gotten faster by hanging onto folks who are just little faster than me," says Kati. In 2016 she ran her second full marathon. "The 2016 Helsinki City Marathon was really exciting. The course went around the city where I spent much of my youth," she remembers. But her most cherished running event was running the 2018 Boston Marathon. "I typically excel in the face of adversity, so while this year's race conditions were not exactly enjoyable, they played to my strengths: mental toughness, perseverance, stubbornness, and my ability to choose denial at will. I got a small PR and a big BQ for 2019. I plan to run Boston as long as I can hit the qualifying time." On her bucket list is to run all the Abbott World Marathon Majors. She will be running the Chicago and New York marathon this fall. I asked her about her goals? "I am still reaching PRs in my mid-50s before the reality of my age inevitably catches up to me. After that I plan to focus on age-graded results." Why did you sign up for the Run The World Global Run Challenge I asked. "I enjoy challenges and structures as well as any project that brings people from many cultures together in a positive way. This is definitely a fun tribe to join as it combines my passions for global citizenship and running," says Kati. She has now lived half of her life in the states and have a dual citizenship. She has a 15-year-old son. Kati is a professor of art at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, where she also served for seven years as an associate dean in the College of Arts & Sciences. Kati Toivanen is an active artist. One of her sixteen solo art exhibitions was favorably reviewed in Art in America. Her works have been published and exhibited nationally and abroad. (07/26/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: "Running is my life and who I am," says 44-year-old Michael Wardian. "I love running and hope to run till my last days." Michael started running after he stopped playing Lacrosse in college to stay in shape.
He lives in Arlington, Virginia with his wife and two children. Michael has accomplished so much. In 2008 he won the US National 100K championships. In 2006 he won four out of five marathons he raced in 45 days.
He held the world record for the fastest marathon time pushing a baby stroller. He set a record of running a marathon on an indoor 200-meter track. He ran the 2012 Olympic Marathon trails clocking 2:21.
The next day he ran another marathon clocking 2:31. He ran seven marathons in seven days on 7 continents clocking an average of 2:45 for each marathon (photo). With so many highlights on his resume, I asked him what would be his top two.
"In 2011 I ran 2:17:49 (PR) at Grandmas Marathon and the same year I placed second at 100k World Championships," Michael said. He is a vegetarian and works as an International Ship-broker.
How about injuries? "I have been very lucky, I have not had many injuries and I think my best secret is to keep moving. After big events, I do an easy jog, hike or even just walk. It keeps everything moving," says Michael.
Why did he enter this challenge? "I think the Run The World Challenge is cool and I hope it gets more people out there," he says.
He is a professional marathon and ultra marathon runner and has been running since 1996. He has represented the USA in the 50k and 100k world championships, and has participated in three Olympic Marathon Trials.
Just recently (July 20-21) Michael placed 11th at the Hardrock 100 clocking 30 hours and 23 minutes for the 100.5 mile very challenging trail race held in Silverton, Colorado. (07/24/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: Roger Wright's father ran the 1969 Boston Marathon
when Roger was seven." When I turned 47, even though I could only run 10 yards, I set a goal of running the 2009 Boston Marathon," says Roger. Starting around the age of 10 or 11 he discovered that he was fat. "As my age increased, so did my weight and by the time I reached 40, I was over 300 lbs at 5'6" tall," he says. "I tried everything to lose weight (diets, going to a gym, weight watchers, etc) but didn't have the discipline to stay with it. My doctor suggested surgery but fortunately I decided against it at the last minute." Ten months after setting the goal to run Boston he lost 120 pounds and ran all 26.2 miles of Boston "without walking one step." Two days before the marathon he made a Cystic Fibrosis (a disease his niece Julia suffers from) fund raising video. "The video got reposted/renamed "The Most Inspiring Video You Will Ever Watch" and ended up going viral (9 millions views right now) and people started recognizing me. I happened to see Meb Keflezighi at the 2013 Boston Marathon expo, he looked at me and said "I know you! You're the guy from the video!". I still smile thinking about that, and everyone else who has reached out and thanked me for being an inspiration," says Roger. This recognition has helped him keep his weight in check. "If I put the weight back on," says Roger, "I fear people might use me as an excuse to never start losing weight so I continue to run marathons all over the world (58 full marathons in nine years) to set a positive example that you can change and make it permanent." Why did Roger join this challenge? "Like a marathon, I constantly seek out challenges to stay in shape and push myself harder. For the Run The World Challenge, I gave Bob a commitment of 35 miles per week. Being a part of the team pushes me harder and so far I have maintained an average of 50 miles per week. When I decided to change my life 10 years ago, it was incredibly hard, but each day I push myself a little harder to maybe make a small difference while I can," says Roger. (07/23/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: “When I was a junior high school student, I was a baseball player,“ says 37-year-old Sam Tada. But one of his teachers thought he had ability for running and he brought him to a track race. “It was a 1500m,” Sam remembers. He ran 5min flat finishing third. “This was my start of my running career here in Japan,” he says. Sam has raced in five countries and has run a 2:24 Marathon. While living in the United States for several years he ran many races including the Double Road Race 15k placing in the top three regularly. Sam and his family moved back to Japan about two years ago. “In Japan, there is big popularity in relay marathon events called ‘Ekiden’. Ekiden is so big in Japan and I love it as well,” says Sam. Why did Sam join this challenge? “The Run The World Challenge is a great idea. It connect runners and it motivates each other global wide.” His plans for the future is to stay competitive in his age category. (07/21/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
The Run The World Global Run Challenge team has logged in 8,138 miles so far which is almost a third of the way around the world in the first 14 days. These miles have been run in 21 countries. The top ten counties based on miles logged are: 1. USA 2. Kenya 3. India 4. South Africa 5. Great Britain 6. Canada 7. Palau 8. Mexico 9. Japan 10. Costa Rica. “We wanted this to be a Global event and that is what it has become,” says Bob Anderson
who created the event. 70-year-old Bob Anderson has logged in 76 miles himself since the start date of July 4. “Our Mission is to celebrate running, motivate our team, inspire others and complete our goal of logging 24,901 miles, the distance around the world in as few days as possible with a team no bigger than 200,” says Bob. Photo: Grace Padilla training at Mammoth Lakes, California last week and logging her miles in for the RUN THE WORLD Challenge. (07/17/2018) ⚡AMP
RUN THE WORLD: Running is a major part of Paul Shimon's life. "I hate being injured," Paul says. But he doesn't stop. "I try to limp along furthering my injury but mentally I am more adjusted! I get depressed if I can't run." He also loves to read historical running stories and check out results from the past. He has a good take on the sport. " I make sure to run in tough conditions so ordinary days are a snap and a treat," he says and he feels that, "training tough makes racing easy." He got interested in running in grade school in 1954. "I watched Roger Bannister on tv set the mile record and I was hooked," he remembers. Paul's marathon PR is 2:30.12 clocked at the third Olympiad Marathon in St. Louis. He has run 135 marathons. Some other PR's include 4:26 for the mile, 14:34 for 5k, and 33:30 for 10k. "I got to run in the San Blas International Marathon (Puerto Rico) back in the early 70"s. Roberto Clemente's (famous baseball player) mother gave out the awards to the top 50 and I was lucky enough to receive one," he says. Paul is married with a son and daughter. He is still teaching APE (Adapted Physical Education) and this will be his 49th year. Why did he sign up for the Run The World Challenge? "I love this challenge. It is getting me to run more and I already feel a higher level of conditioning. I am quicker to get out the door too," Paul says. (07/17/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: Elliot Daniels started running when he was nine years old. "I went to a parent participatory school starting in 4th grade. My dad participated by helping out with my school's running club. I decided to join the club just for fun and for something to do after school. For most kids, it was a way to pass time. For me, it became something I took seriously," says Elliot. Running is not the most important thing in his life, "but with long term olympic goals and short term high school state champion goals, running is very important to me," he says. Two things really stand out for Elliot. When he was 10-years-old he set the world record for that age-group in the half marathon (1:29:14). Secondly was when his high school cross country season started. He has had a lot of sucess already and he shares this advice. " Enjoy running, begin running with low mileage and very slowly build the intensity of your running and mileage. Do not be discouraged by others or by a lousy performance and most importantly, remember to consistently train hard and smart." Is there a secret to Elliot's sucess? "I do not believe there is any trick or secret to succeeding in running. You must simply train hard and smart and never give up," Elliot says. Why did he join the Run The World Challenge Team? "I think this challenge is an opportunity for people to learn from each other from their training and an opportunity for people to look back at their training to figure out what worked for them and what didn't." Elliot has big goals. Not only does he want to make the US Olympic Team he wants to become a medalist in either the 5,000m or 10,000m. (07/16/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: “I will be 75 in six months,” says Fred Martín, “and my running journey has taken many twists and turns since 1960. I ran my usual weekend long run this morning (single track in woods in Northern California). My thoughts were to savor the moment since it could be my last run,” Fred said. “It is something we all (in our age group) should think about.” Fred went out for track his freshman year of high school (1959) and got pretty good by his junior and senior year. Good enough to get a scholarship to Montana State. In college he competed against some of the best runners in the Pacific Northwest like Doug Brown and Tracy Smith. He ran on the US Army team from 1968-70. He placed fifth in World Master’s 800 meters in 2011 and his team (Len, Hans and himself) won the National title for 70-79 year olds in the 8K for two straight years. He has been racing well now for nearly 60 years. Fred has this to say about aging. “There are more 70-year-old runners now than decades before and setting new standards, hell I remember races in the seventies that never had an age group over 59. “As aging becomes more noticeable in our own personal lives we will be challenged more and our experience in years of training discipline comes into play. “Times will become less important vs staying healthy and injury free, remember the old saying “if you don’t use it you’ll loose it.” We will take our falls and mend broken bones, ward off cancer, deal with painful arthritis and tolerate medication to fix heart issues but we will be back out there doing what we love. From the heart of a lonely long distance runner,” says Fred. His goal is to be able to keep running into his 80’s. What’s his thinking on the Run The World Challenge? “I think it’s a good incentive and another tool to keep our running schedule in check,” he says. Photo: Fred on the right end with the gang. (07/14/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: Mary Menton has been running for over 25 years. She works full time as a family Advisor Dignity memorial. "I protect families on the worst day of their life before someone passes," Mary says. "I have been doing this for 3 and half years and I love it as much as running." She gets up around 5 am to run before work and if needed does a second workout in the evening. "Running to so important to me and it always will be. It provides peace, its like a drug. It not only is a physical addiction for me but it is mental as well. I need to be exercising and running. Its a feeling and enjoyment people who don't run can't understand what it is like to be a runner," says Mary. She was one of the top 10 Americans at the Boulder Boulder 10k and she qualified for the Marathon Olympics Trials three times. "As a Master the work is more difficult," she says, "because we are older the injuries are much higher. I am dealing with an injury now. As a master it is much more relaxing and I am not so hard on myself." She discovered running as a young girl while, "watching my older sister and a AAU sprinter. My mom would pack PJ’s because track meets were all day. So my little sister and I would be let loose running around the stadium. I was in awe of the runners." Mary has three girls. "Sara is working for the Court of Appeals in Denver. She is a lawyer. My daughter Megan is a RN living in Denver. My 3rd daughter Ryan will be a Senior at Trinity Catholic." What does she think of this challenge? "The Run The World challenge is another one of Bob Anderson's fantastic ideas. His passion for the sport is infectious. He is not only an advocate of running but a motivator to everyone. Having the Run The World challenge spreads the importance of running and keeps people together for a common interest." Mary's current goal is to start running regularly again and get back to 50 miles a week. (07/12/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: Pulkit Singh (26) took a high pressure job after graduation in 2015 in the Steel City of India, Jamshedpur. He started feeling burned out and he needed to do something. "It was one normal working day that I woke up on unearthly hours and went out for a run.. It was 3:30am, I started to run and since then I have never looked back. I got infected by the running bug." Running has changed Pulkit's life. "Running is like a tonic/medicine to my everyday routine. The pressurized work culture of my company hasn’t changed but my patience, tolerance and attitude has completely changed. Today I remain active even after working for 12+ hours a day. Running has taught me the art of ‘perseverance," he says. He completed his first marathon in 6 hours 9 minutes. " I am proud of the fact that I was on my feet for 6 hours. Under hot blazing sun I completed my first marathon (FM). People criticize runners who walk while running their FM. I have an altogether different aspect for this. Many a time it came in my mind that I should give up and consider a respectable DNF and come back next year in a stronger avatar. But the glory which waits at the finish line motivated me to complete." He has many goals but one is to run the 100th annual Comrades Marathon in 2021. Pulkit has to say about this challenge. "The fact that you have a challenge in front of you motivates you to bring out the best in one’s own self. Once the Run The World Challenge concludes we are all winners, no matter how many miles we have logged. The fact that an individual takes up a challenge is in itself terms him/her to be a winner because they all gave up their comfort zone for a better/fitter tomorrow. You never know whom you are motivating indirectly" (07/10/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: Jennifer Bayliss (47) discovered running in the third grade. She says, "Laura beat me in the 50 yard dash on the sidewalk in P.E. class at school. I did not like that. I really wanted to beat her and all the boys." In high school and college she still wanted to beat all the Laura's and the boys. She did until injury took over her collegiate career. "I did manage to capture All American status, a conference championship title and run at the NCAA's before having to call it quits." 15 years later she returned to running as a master once her kids started driving and she found a little time to lace up her shoes. How important is running? "Running is where I push myself to reach goals, believe in myself, have confidence, trust the plan, feel fit and healthy, connect with people, see beautiful places, have stories to tell, learn how to deal with good and bad stress, and mostly have a blast." Just recently she ran the Boilermaker 15K in Utica, New York. She clocked 56:59 (which is 6:05 per mile). She was the 5th American Master woman. She was pleased with her performance as she pursues her ultimate goal. "My goal is to run an Olympic Trial qualifier for the Marathon. For women, that means at least a time of 2:45. My plan is to race myself into shape with a hybrid of a plan- a little short, long, trail and training and racing distances from the mile to the marathon." Jennifer is a Road Runners Club of America Certified Coach. How did you find out about this challenge? "I heard about the Run The World Challenge from Rosaura Briceno-Tennant and Bertrand Newson and thought- these are my friends, my people-I want to do what they are doing because they are awesome people and runners." (07/10/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: Ram Venkatraman started running in 1997 when he was working in Uganda, East Africa. He had gained some weight and like so many of us could only run five minutes at first. However before long he moved it up to 90 minutes every day for six days a week. “I ran along the beautiful roads fronting the Victoria River where the source of the River Nile is situated,” Ram says. Running became a very important part of his life. “Running is my meditation, my relaxation time. If I don’t run for a week, I start getting irritable. Running has improved my health as I used to get recurring bouts of cold and cough but that has diminished with running,” he says. His club is the Mumbai Road Runners. “The club came out of an idea to do a once a month long run along the Mumbai marathon route, basically in order to familiarise ourselves with the route, meet up and greet with friends at the end of the run, have breakfast and go home,” he says. Subsequently it has grown by leaps and bounds and now have numerous other activities like monthly yoga, football, Frisbee, awards nite, workshops etc. “We now also fund underprivileged runners by contributing to their registration fees, travel, stay etc.” The running scene in India has taken off exponentially after the Mumbai Marathon came to India in the year 2004. “Since then there have been numerous marathons and half marathons in all the big cities plus Tier I and Tier II cities as well. Running clubs have sprouted up everywhere – some formal and most informal. People have begun to take running seriously mostly from the health point of view,” says Ram. Asked what he thought of this challenge. “It is a fantastic challenge which is bringing together people from all over the world for a single cause. It is magnificent. So many people – elites as well as amateur runners joining to achieve a target is monumental.” (07/07/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: As a kid Verity Breen
ran randomly. "I was beginning to tool my intrinsic nature inside where "the runner" lived," says Verity. She was the youngest of four adopted children living in Australia. When Verity was 22 (1989) she was engaged to be married to a guy who was doing the triathlon. "I followed him when he swam, and swam too," Verity says. She also started to run with him some nights after work. "One night I felt a sudden gush of adrenaline and got bored with the pace and took off, beating him back to his parents house. This was not well received. Anyway, for another reason he called off the wedding." She got really into the triathlon and in fact in 1991 she was on the National Australia Team at the Triathlon World Championships. "It was this ton of triathlon racing that lead me to realize that running was the great love. Here I am three decades later of racing, still in love." So how important is running to Verity? "It's the one thing that is always there for you, it picks you up on down days, it carries you along on happy days and it makes me feel fully woke as I am using my entire body and mind as one. However if you tie your identity up entirely with being seen as a runner you discount your other gifts and interests and are at a loss for who you are if at some points one must rest, recover or not race and be patient. Running is an important part of who I am but it's not all that I am," she says. She has run over 150 marathons and one stands out. "Maybe on a amusing note was my Maui Marathon win in 2012. My husband came home from work Friday afternoon and I asked him how he would feel about me flying to Hawaii to do a marathon. He said, sure! When? I said "tomorrow" he burst out laughing. So on a cheap flight I managed to get for 300 bucks, he dropped me off with my small bag and wished me luck." The next morning she was at the start line. "Early into the hot race on an incredible one way coastal course I found myself in the lead. Whoa. With an 8 minute gap till the second female and the entire road to myself I was in racing heaven. As I rolled into the awesome finish chute in first hot as heck but so happy I was just amazed that I had pulled this off." She is married to Randy. They met at Bondi Beach in Australia and got married exactly one year later. They have two dogs, has a garden and lives in Northern California. In 2007 she started Thirty Birds, her own brand of women's running apparel. Asked about this challenge. "The Run The World Challenge got my attention. It's great to be accountable and to connect, to encourage people to move and run and share the challenge of piling up miles together as we virtually circle this amazing globe together one stride at a time. Moving together. Love it." (07/06/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: Carla van Kampen (57) from Westport Connecticut has lived in Rome, Italy for 26 years now. "I have never stopped feeling like a tourist," Carla says. "When I first came in 1992 Rome was a very different city, a bit gentler in some ways and definitely frustrating in others. Customer service was an unknown concept." However training in Rome was and is a dream. "I workout year-round at the Stadio delle Terme di Caracalla, with spectacular views of the ruins of the Baths of Caracalla! I rarely have to cancel a run because of bad weather, short of a torrid downpour. And the Italians are running crazy with races of all kinds every weekend of the year." she says. She has been running since she was 11 or 12 years-old, motivated by watching the 1972 Olympics. "We would hold neighborhood 100 yard dashes on the private road flanking our house, boys and girls mixed. I loved the feeling of beating a boy! In high school I ran the 880 and the mile and was the captain of the first girls cross country team under the Title IX rule." Carla did not abandon running but did not run competivity for a few years. "I only started running competitively again in my late 40s when I decided to run a marathon. To help prepare for the Florence Marathon in 2007 I enlisted the services of my club trainer and the rest is history...we have been together for 10 years (four marathons and more than 20 half marathons later)." Carla, however first love is racing on the track. "In 2012 I made the switch from the road Back to the track with success in my age-group in the 400 and 800 meters, and in June, winning a national 4x400 title in the category 50-54." Asked about this challenge, "The Run The World Global Run Challenge is what I love about running: from the fastest elite-level athlete participating to the non-competitive jogger, we are all part of a community passionate about this sport!" (Photo is from a race in Rome Called the "Miglio di Roma"....they were trying to re-create a 5th Avenue Mile. Carla is in red.) (07/05/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: Michael T Anderson started running as a sophomore in college after he quit the baseball team, had put on weight and realized he needed to get back in shape. "There was a race in November called the Turkey Trot which I wanted to run," he says. "I trained all summer, losing about 30 pounds in six months." Michael ended up coming in 8th overall and shocked everyone. "I was totally hooked. A year later in 1978 I ran my first marathon in 2:50 at the New York City Marathon at age 20. That began a life long love with this sport that has never stopped," he says. Running is an integral part of his daily life. "I love running and it is part of my daily life. It doesn't define me, but has provided motivation, focus, competitiveness, dedication and spirit to my life." He has logged in almost 130,000 miles since he started back in 1977. He has run 53 marathons and two ultra-marathons. "My PR is 2:25:02 at the New York City Marathon in 1981." He has won four marathons and was part of a masters relay team that won the overall masters title at the Hood To Coast Relay (10th overall). I asked him about being part of this challenge. "I think this is an amazing endeavor! To show that this can be done with a little organization, determination and passion by so many people who are involved in this sport/activity is beyond description." Michael (60) has lived in Atlanta GA since 1982. "I have been married for 31 years to an ex-marathoner, Molly who has a PR of 3:15 and now is an endurance swimmer due to knee problems." They have two children. Most recently Michael ran the Peachtree
10K on July 4th logging these miles for Run The World. (07/05/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson
RUN THE WORLD: At the age of 49 Liz Duman joined the gym. Once fit enough she started running and it was love at first run. Running helped her lose 38 pounds. A year later she ran her first half-marathon. "I live in a small town in South Africa next to the Kruger National Park and the Blyde Canyon," says Lize. Running has become a very important part of her life. "I have made the best friends, I love the challenges, grit and achievements. Running has become part of who I am," she says. She likes running races, however. "Running races is great, but the most special moments remain those training runs when you run with a running buddy and at times the only conversation is your breathing and sound of your feet hitting the ground." Liz has been married for 25 years and have three boys. Asked about why she joined this challenge. "Run The World Challenge is a fantastic challenge, joining us together across age, gender, proficiency or location to celebrate the one thing we all love - running." (07/04/2018) ⚡AMPby Bob Anderson