Jacqui Bell is a woman on a mission.
She is on a journey to become the youngest female to complete Racing the Planet’s Grand Slam of four 250km runs across deserts in Chile, Mongolia, Namibia and Antarctica.
Jacqui has completed 750km of her journey, and is set to commence the final leg of her expedition in November. This is sure to test even the fiercest competitor, with extreme terrain and temperatures, and just 7 days to complete the 250km course.
Jacqui began her race in Namibia in April 2018, placing third among her fellow female athletes, but she came a cropper with symptoms of plantarfasciitis. Luck had it that our Head Physiotherapist Miranda bumped into Jacqui out and about, and as Jacqui puts it, “Miranda couldn’t help herself and wanted assist me with getting it better before my 2nd Desert Run in Mongolia”.
After just a few sessions with Miranda, she saw a significant improvement with her injury. Jacqui was so pleased that Miranda sought to locate the underlying issues, rather than just treating the symptoms at hand. Before Race 2 in Mongolia, Miranda provided Jacqui with some simple tools to address her plantarfasciitis, in the form of second skin for blisters and heel lifts for her shoes. Jacqui now treasures both of these items, holding them close for all future races!
With her feet feeling better, Jacqui then proceeded to trek through the Gobi Desert in Mongolia in August. After completing half of her journey, she began preparing for the Atacama Crossing in Chile. The was her most difficult trek yet, with a completely different climate to her usual training environment. However, she completed the race, through water, across deserts, and up and down sand dunes after sand dune. Jacqui attributes her success up until this point to grit, determination, preparation, and some specialised treatment and advice from Miranda!
Jacqui commences the final leg of her trek on the 23rd of November. Antarctica offers the coldest air temperatures on earth, with competitors expected to be running in temperatures as low as 20° Celsius. No doubt as well as some very warm clothing, Jacqui will pack her heel lefts and second skins.
A very important part of Jacqui’s race is bringing attention to the mental health struggles people suffer in everyday life, by linking her run with The White Cloud Foundation. The White Cloud Foundation aims to provide support and programs to people suffering with depression, perinatal depressions and post traumatic stress disorder.
Jacqui has so far raised $15,000 for the foundation, and has set her goal at raising a total of $20,000 by the end of her running adventures. Click on the link below to add to this tally, and support an important cause.
Once completed, Jacqui will hold the title of the youngest female to complete Racing the Planets 4 Desert Ultramarathon, having run a total of 1000km! We have been thrilled to have been involved in Jacqui undertaking this amazing feat, and can not wait to celebrate her victory upon her return from the coldest desert in the world!