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marathon des sables


Ranked by the Discovery Channel as the toughest footrace on
Earth, Morocco’s Marathon des Sables (Sand Marathon) covers over 150 miles of
sprawling Saharan desert over five days, attracting only the bravest and
fittest marathon runners. This year’s event begins on Friday 8th
April, attracting spectators as well as runners.


Now in its 28th consecutive year, the event is
more popular than ever, with a place on the starting line highly sought after.
Completing the course is a huge achievement – not only will you have run the
equivalent of six marathons, but also completed it in the blistering desert
heat whilst carrying with you everything you’ll need to survive for a week.

This may in fact be the hardest aspect of the race – apart
from a tent and water, you’ll need to carry food and any other equipment you’ll
need to last the marathon with you. Some runners have taken extreme measures to
save weight as a result, from cutting their toothbrushes in half to drying out
wet wipes.

As the competitors run through temperatures that can soar as
high as 50°C, they’ll find every mile is just as torturous as the last, their
bodies deprived of water and their sweat evaporating in the blazing heat. What
keeps them going, however, is completing the final stage and knowing they have
finished one of the world’s toughest races.

As well as finishing the course, the experience itself is
utterly unforgettable, with the runners fostering life-long friendships as they
traverse over saltpans, sand dunes, through ruined towns and even through the
occasional sand storm. It will also help to change the lives of thousands of
people all over the world, raising several thousands of pounds for numerous
charities.

If you’re thinking of entering into next year’s race or
simply coming to admire the spectacle during your trip, make sure you’re
relaxing in ultimate indulgence at our wonderful villas in Morocco.


Image: US Army Corps of Engineers
Europe District
, available under Creative Commons

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