The whole world, running at the same time, on the same day – 8 May 2016 – for spinal cord research.

According to the Wings For Life website “… it all started with a simple but intriguing idea on a layover at Moscow airport: What if you could get the whole world running? Everyone, worldwide, on the same day, at the same time. A race of epic proportions with just one lone runner left at the end. A world run. But could it be done? It could.”

I was part of another event that started as a joke at a pub – we turned it into the massive Daredevil Run for cancer. I love how seemingly random ideas can change the world, like this one aims to.

Some people run for fitness, others do it for a cause. The Wings for Life Foundation has had 136,677 people participate in over 40 locations, raising more than €7 million (± R115m) to help fund spinal cord injury research projects all over the world.

“Runners and wheelchair competitors, from beginners to elite athletes, race side by side to stay ahead of the Catcher Car, chasing them from behind. If it catches you, you have finished the race!” says the website.

wingsforlife austria

Participants compete during the Wings for Life World Run in Austria on May 3, 2015. Images courtesy

Hlubi Mboya, fitness junkie, Cliff Central radio personality and overall legend, will be running her butt off on 8 May in Pretoria alongside CN&CO’s Rob Christian and Carel Nolte, and Purple Group’s Justin Pearse, Almero Oosthuizen and Josh Nuttall (who also writes the regular IN THE SADDLE feature on the CN&CO blog).

Who’s going to be the last runner standing? The first-ever Wings for Life World Run global champion (in 2014) was Norway’s then 18-year-old Elise Molvik, who finished 54.79km before she was caught by the Catcher Car.

Josh, who is always a great sport and up for initiatives like this, says, “Wings for Life World Run is a great initiative that struck a chord due to its chore values and the fact that it’s encouraging people to get active, while growing awareness and having fun”

Carel Nolte, who is also an ambassador for the running club Born2Run, will be using this as an inspiring warm-up for his third Comrades Marathon at the end of May. Carel is looking forward to another year of contributing to charity during the build-up to this year’s races. It’s easy to contribute if you’re keen, and there’s no minimum amount. Just follow this link to #fucancer.

Carel believes being fit and keeping healthy is not just for outside of the work space or after hours and thus CN&CO and Purple Group are always involved in awesome initiatives like these, especially when it involves being active.

So the challenge is set! Hlubi, Carel, Rob, Justin, Almero and Josh… who will run the furthest before the Catcher Car catches you?

Big thumbs up to all of you (and everyone else) for taking part in this amazing cause!

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