Brian will be one of nearly 900 participants, and one of only 29 Americans, running in the 2012 Marathon des Sables. Also known as “The Toughest Foot Race on Earth,” Brian will cover approximately 250 km, or 6 marathons, in seven days. While he’s running, temperatures in the Sahara will range from 40 to 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Although daily distances vary, one stage is over 80 km of nonstop running over two days. And, remember, Brian will be running on sand.
Midlife Crisis? Or Philanthropic Insanity?
Is Brian a) crazy, b) masochistic or c) an incredible athlete? Actually, the correct answer is d) none of the above. Instead, Brian is running to raise awareness for the non-profit, Kids in the Game, and to inspire kids to get fit, eat well and dream big. Recognizing that this quest still might sound a bit crazy, he calls it “philanthropic insanity.”
Brian’s fundraising goal is $50,000. None of this money will go to support him or pay his race and travel expenses. Instead, 100% of the money will go to Kids in the Game, where all of the money will fund sports fees for low-income youth.
Youth Sports in the USA
Consider these statistics about youth sports:
- 62% of kids ages 9-13 do not participate in sports because of lack of funds
- 33% of American kids are overweight or obese by 3rd grade
- 70% drop out of youth sports by age 13
- $3.5 billion eliminated from after-school sports programs during 2010-2011 (source: Kids in the Game)
Now consider that research has overwhelmingly shown that kids who participate in after-school athletic programs have:
- less misconduct and criminal activity
- higher levels of physical activity later in life
- better academic performance
- less substance abuse
- less teen pregnancy
- less obesity (source: Kids in the Game)
Now do you see why Brian’s running?
For more information on Kids in the Game and Brian’s Sahara Challenge, check out the following video. It explains his passion and motivation, and the importance of his cause, better than I can. And, then please donate, share this post and video, and help get a kid in the game.
Donations can be made online at http://www.kidsinthegame.org. Or you can send a check to Kids In The Game, Attn: Sahara Challenge, 1500 NE Butler Market Rd, Bend, OR 97701.
If you wish to follow Brian’s adventure on April 8-14th, he is planning to phone in daily race reports. Updates will be found at www.kidsinthegame.org.
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