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Africa » Cape Verde » Sal
February 15th 2008
Published: February 15th 2008EDIT THIS ENTRY

1 240km over different terrain: sanddunes, rocks, soft sand, roads, mountains - who knows what else
2 In the Western Sahara Desert in Morocco
3 Carrying your own food, sleeping bag, emergency kit, clothes and anything else you may need
4 The organisers will provide 9 litres of water over the course of a day which will have to be sufficient for drinking, cooking and sanitary purposes. They also provide a rudamentary tent to be shared with 7 other competitors
Now travel the 240kms with your 12kg (25lb) pack on your back and sleep in the desert for a week: No, this is not hell, it is the Marathon Des Sables. (31st March to 6 April)

This is Seppy and Jon´s biggest challenge yet (apart from living with each other of course). To do this we have been training since August last year and are now training full time since the beginning of January. We are spending Feb and March sand and climate training to get used to running in the sand and heat, both of which are in short supply in both Ireland and Netherlands at the moment.

How can you help us:
When we are in the desert we will be able to receive text e’mails only - they will be printed off by the organisers and given to us at the end of the day BUT here´s the kicker - to ensure that we receive them, the subject field must include our name and our race number, so for:
McArdle, Septima #226
Maguire, Jonathan #227
IN THE SUBJECT FIELD - otherwise we will not receive them. Pictures etc will also not be allowed and may invalidate the e’mail completely. Your e’mails will be gratefully received after a tough day running!

Now the equally important part:
How can you help others:
Whilst Jonathan and I will spend a week in the desert with only rudamentary sanitation, basic food and have to travel by foot every day, we Chose this! For many people in our world these basic precepts of light, food in the belly, clean water and a roof over their heads are denied to them, not through their own fault but through circumstances outside their control - perhaps war, famine or another of the myriad of reasons. That is why when we chose this race, we decided to try to benefit others aswell. Hence, we have chosen two charities (one each) - both of which are equally deserving and both of which are very relevant to this experience (PLEASE NOTE THAT 100% OF ANY DONATION WILL GO TO THE CHARITY - WE HAVE ALREADY PAID OUR WAY FOR THIS)

Malaria No More:
I am running this on behalf of the charity Malaria No More! Netherlands (MNM!NL) ( LINK is Here - select "Particulieren" and you'll see a button called "Online Doneren" for donations). Margret van Gaalen, who used to work in the Amsterdam office, works with this charity now and easily convinced me of it worthiness. The parallels to the MdS particularly appeal to me - the location, the requirements for proper preparation, perseverance and will power to make it happen, endurance/stamina to last the course, self sufficiency so that help is not needed in the future, respect for the individual, and open mindedness.

GOAL is a charity which throughout its existence (since 1977) has dealt with both emergency situations (famine relief, tsunami relief, poverty to name but a few), but also dealt with longer term solutions, once emergency situations have been resolved, GOAL implements a wide range of rehabilitation programmes including primary healthcare, repair of home and infrastructure, clinics, schools etc., and water and sanitation. Long-term development programmes in areas such as health, nutrition, education and capacity building of indigenous humanitarian organisations are also implemented.

Here´s how to donate:
1 By Paypal
2 Directly to us
3 Pledge - see attached card
4 Direct to GOAL or to MalariaNoMore ( LINK is Here - select "Particulieren" and you'll see a button called "Online Doneren" for donations)

The GOAL bank details for direct payments are below:

Bank: Allied Irish Bank
Name of Account: GOAL
Account No: 04000-024
Sort Code: 93-35-54
IBAN: IE93 AIBK 9335 5404 0000 24
Address: Church Road, Greystones, Co Wicklow, Ireland

You may also go to or Malaria No More to donate on-line.

Just to reassure you, 100% of all monies donated will go to the specified charities. Jonathan and I have paid (from our own savings) the entrance for the race and all related costs.

Thank you!


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