Six marathons in six days for social responsibility

09 May 2014
Florence tramping in the Nelson Lakes [photo supplied]

An Arts and Science student heads to Chile tomorrow to take part in a global team adventure where the team will run 250km in less than a week.

Florence Reynolds, who is studying towards degrees in psychology and ecology, is taking part in Expedition Atacama 2014, an adventure race organised by an education-focussed, youth-empowerment group, impossible2possible.

The race is in Atacama, Chile and ambassadors will run the equivalent of six marathons in six days. For Florence, who has yet to race a single marathon, it is an exciting adventure, and she is determined to rise to the challenge.

“I’ve never run a marathon before and I know it’s going to be extremely challenging and painful! I’m doing it because I believe that everyone, especially young people, should know that they are able to push beyond their limits, and achieve what may seem impossible.”

Florence will become the first New Zealander selected to take part in the adventure race, which is themed “Origins of the Universe” and where the team will, in between the running, learn about topics such as positional astronomy, planets, stars, and cosmology and relativity.

“I feel incredibly honoured to be given this opportunity, and to be the first Kiwi selected. It’s not long until the expedition‼ I’m so excited and also nervous…I know that on the expedition, I will want to give up at some point. But I also know that I will do everything that I possibly can to be resilient and keep going!”

The drive to succeed shouldn’t be too hard for Florence, who was selected for the University’s 360° Leadership Programme this year, and is an active advocate on the sustainability scene, being part of the Plastic Diet group, which is advocating for the reduction in the use of plastics.

The impossible2possible team will also, via video conferencing, share their experiences with schools and classrooms around that world that have registered to follow their progress.

Atacama, Chile 2014 begins on 12 May 2014.