The Odyssey

You cannot discover new oceans unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore’ – Andre Gide

The Odyssey is the story of my ultra-marathon and adventure running. It began in 2013 when, at the age of 50, I completed my first extreme adventure races: The Antarctic Ice Marathon and the Antarctic 100k. This was my Antarctic Odyssey. Exceeding all expectations this ordinary, older runner finished 4th woman in the marathon and 1st woman 3rd overall in the 100 km (just 28 hours later).

That life-changing experience showed me that I could achieve incredible things and take on extreme challenges that I would never have dreamt possible. It set the path for further dreams and adventures. If I could do this, what else could I do? Where would my odyssey go next?

The heat and altitude of the Atacama Desert, the ice floes over the North Pole, the Namib, Sahara and Gobi deserts and the frozen Mongolian steppe. Each presenting a unique challenge and extreme running conditions.


 

The Global Odyssey 100

This is my current adventure.

I was asked if I would to run a marathon or longer on every continent. The first response was ‘no’ as I did not want to get into box ticking or simply dropping into a location to run and leave. However once the thought was there in my head it was only a matter of time before a challenge took form.

Ultra-marathon challenges are my passion. I am at heart an ultra-marathon runner who loves running in wild and remote terrain; and so why not be master of my own destiny and run an extreme 100k ultra-marathon on every continent finding new tough routes and tackling a variety of extreme conditions whilst doing it.

The Global Odyssey was born.




Journey so far

Antarctica - 2013, The Antarctic Ice 100k.
Dedicated to my father David Keith

Europe - 2017, Grand Raid Des Bogomiles 100k.
Dedicated to my uncle Francis Sweeney

Asia - 2018,The Gobi Desert Global Odyssey 100k

Africa – 2019, The Moroccan Global Odyssey 100k.
Dedicated to my friend Fiona Keating.

South America – 2019, The Patagonian Global Odyssey 100k

Oceania – 2020, The New Zealand Global Odyssey 100k
Dedicated to my mother Rosalind Keith

North America – the last continent.
The Greenland Arctic Global Odyssey 100k in in planning.


 

Its not been easy

Don’t be afraid to fail, be afraid not to try’ – Michael Jordan

I have not always succeeded first time. It would not be a challenge if it were easy or if I succeed every time.

The Global Odyssey runs that have not gone well:

  • 2018 Namibian Global Odyssey 100k where heat exhaustion stopped me at just 42.4km in the Namib desert.
  • 2018 Ultra Mirage el Djerid where once again the heat defeated me in the Sahara in Tunisia.
  • 2019 River Valley Summer Revenge in Edmonton, Canada where I was timed out of the event on a highly technical course.

26.2 mile success

As it turns out, during the Odyssey journey I have succeeded in completing a 26.2 mile marathon event or challenge on every continent:

Antarctica – 2013
The Antarctic Ice Marathon

South America – 2014
The Volcano Marathon

Africa – 2017
The Namibian Sand Marathon
(desert and ice double marathon event)

Asia – 2017
The Mongolian Ice Marathon
(desert and ice double marathon event)

Europe – 2019
Glentress Trail Run

North America – 2019
Taylor Mountain Trail Run

Oceania – 2020
Hakatere Te Araroa Trail Marathon