Olivier's obsession with marathons started eight years ago, after his first successful marathon in Christchurch:

“I was nicely surprised to see how fit I was and how well my body handled the race. I did a few more marathons after that, then I thought to myself ‘why not run 100 marathons?’” says Olivier.

He says his goal became meaningful, and therefore motivating, the moment he decided to raise money for a charity. Choosing a charity was easy for Olivier - Red Cross has had a special place in his heart for a long time.

When Olivier was 18 years old, he went on a school trip to Spain where a pot of boiling hot milk fell on him. The local Red Cross took care of him – something Olivier never forgot.

So far, Olivier has run 76 races and raised over $37,000 through sponsors, fundraising dinners, auctions, movie nights and many other events! He is hoping to raise $42,200 at the end of his 100th marathon in 2020.

“I originally made my target $26,200, because 26.2 is the number of miles for a marathon. However, I have raised a lot more, so I have changed my target to $42,200 as 42.2 is equivalent in kilometres for a marathon,” says Olivier. 

In April, Olivier will be racing the Marathon des Sables (‘The Marathon of the Sands’). This ultra-marathon will be the toughest one Olivier has ever done and is arguably the toughest in the world: 250km over six days in the Sahara desert, where temperatures can reach 50 degrees Celsius during the day, and drop down to 3 degrees at night.

“I am very excited about it. I received my gear the other day. It’s all becoming real now. I can’t wait to be there, what an amazing challenge! The scenery looks amazing, it will be full of memories, joy and emotions,” says Olivier.

You can support Olivier in his amazing challenge on his fundraising page and follow his adventures in the Sahara Desert through his Facebook page

Olivier next to his outfit for the Marathon des Sables. Artful Dodge Photography