Londolozi guest and ambassador, Graham Wood, is serious about running. So serious that he has entered the Iceland mega marathaon, a 260km trail run through the freezing wilderness of Iceland! Graham’s visits to Londolozi have exposed him to the mission of Good Work Foundation and he has chosen to run this race for them.
Why I am doing this?
I’ve always been into the outdoors, love my running, fitness etc so this all seemed like a fantastic idea at the time. Little did I know the huge task that was ahead of me… I’m not the fittest guy in the world, but I love a challenge, the chance to have once in a lifetime experiences, while hopefully doing some good at the same time, hence why I am running for Good Work Foundation. I had no idea when I entered, the time and commitment this would require, but I hope crossing that finish line makes it all worth it.
Why did you choose Good Work Foundation?
Firstly I am South African, and know how many young disadvantaged people in this country, are in need of just that small bit of assistance or leg up in life, to truly succeed or be given that opportunity to succeed. I have been lucky in that I have been afforded the opportunity to succeed, but hopefully by doing this and raising some money, I am in a position where I can give back to people, to try to improve lives, and ensure that others have the same opportunities that I did.
I’ve been to Londolozi on numerous occasions, and seen first-hand what they are achieving in step with Good Work Foundation and the nearby communities. Enabling these young people with the skills to succeed and progress in life, seems to me one of the greatest gifts you can give. It’s awesome to be a part of that, and hopefully I can inspire others to follow in my footsteps.
Tell us more about the race?
The race is set in Iceland and is an ultra-marathon of 260km, set over 6 stages. On average you’re running approximately 45km a day, whilst carrying all your own equipment (10-12kgs), excluding the water that the race organisers provide. There are very few roads, very few paths, varying temperatures, and I take my hat off to the people that have done more than one of these, as it really is a very tough challenge just doing the training alone.
I think that the highs of the race will be the opportunity to run with friends, a once in a lifetime experience and the chance to experience somewhere new in a way you will most likely never do. The idea of no roads, no paths, no phones, no assistance makes it a true test for the mind and hence it is trail running at its best. I also feel honored to be able to raise money for Good Work Foundation through this experience.
That said, I know that there will be many lows as well. The food is not great, all of it is pretty much dehydrated powder, which forms a delectable paste… that gives your required calorie amount for the day. The training has been long and is now becoming very arduous. As a professional with a family, carving out 8-16hrs every weekend of your life for the last 3 months, has been no easy task, and I look forward to enjoying a few weekends on the couch after this race is completed.
All of the funds raised by Graham for this race will go towards the mission of Good Work Foundation. If you would like to make a contribution, please CLICK HERE and select Iceland Race as the project.