Meet Richard from Galway
To most people running a marathon is a life-long ambition, to Richard it's just the warm up. An ultra runner from Galway who is slowly conquering the world without ever believing he is actually conquering anything. In 2002 Richard won the inaugural South Pole Marathon, his response to that was to create and run a North Pole marathon. He followed with winning the Inca Trail Marathon, the Everest Challenge Marathon, the Antarctic 100km and the Himalayan 100 Mile Stage Race. Richard has also established the Antarctic Ice Marathon and Volcano Marathon and holds a world record for running marathons on all seven continents - he managed to do it in 4 days 22 hours 3 minutes! He now operates the World Marathon Challenge giving people the opportunity to run 7 marathons on 7 continents in 7 days.
He is the ultimate adventurer who is so down to earth he claims that others are always achieving as much as he is. Richard loves running but he isn't into the technical approach; he doesn't over think what he is undertaking and he feels ultra running is an endurance sport where the mental side is most important, rather than a power sport. He ran 5,000km across America last September and has just finished running 3,000 km across Europe. Richard said he believes women are well suited to ultra running as they have a great endurance capacity and mental strength and the uptake of women is becoming more common in recent years.
A lot of people try to turn their passion into their career but Richard has successfully done this. With a background in economics, he is also well equipped to make a success of organising races in extreme locations and environments. He believes organising his extreme races are actually more challenging than running the races. For example, for his North Pole event Russian paratroopers must first parachute in with a tractor to create a runway so planes can land with all essential camp equipment. However with ice becoming more fragile in recent years sometimes a runway location can need to be relocated after camp is set up, and the race delayed.
If you take part in one of his races the only thing you will have to do is turn up and run. Richard wants to enable people to run in extreme environments and have their own adventure. So if you are feeling inspired and fancy having a go yourself, check out his websites below.