The challenger: Mariska Kempers
Running experience: I've been running on and off for the last nine years and participated in a variety of half marathons and more recently, adventure-style racing.
What do you do to stay inspired/motivated?
Nothing has ever motivated me more than my daughter. I’ve never smiled so much while training as I do when I’ve got her in tow.
One new thing you've discovered about yourself
Every day that I train, I push myself to do just a little bit extra. It`s amazing how I have transformed both physically and mentally. What I once thought I couldn`t be capable of, I now believe I am. And as a result it has opened up a whole new realm of possibilities for me.
Biggest fear about the upcoming race
Fighting off insanity through the night while making every effort to get myself through the long 80km stretch on the fifth race day.
What are you looking forward to about the race?
3 things definitely being packed in your backpack
WATER, my iPod, sunglasses.
Favourite music to run to/ what are you putting on your iPod?
I typically like high tempo music when running, but I`m finding that this is more of an emotional journey and I'm drawn to songs that allow me to reminisce. Songs that illustrate defeat or encourage me to push through my fears seem to be favourites right now. I’ve never listened to a book while running, but this is probably a great opportunity for me to try it out.
How do you plan to celebrate when you finish the race?
I'm going to meet my husband and daughter somewhere in the Mediterranean for a lot of R&R.