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 - Meet the MDS team- Chris Gaskin

Meet the MDS Team 2021 – Chris Gaskin

In May 2021, Chris Gaskin climbed to the top of all 214 Wainwright fells in the Lake District without any external support in record time, all in aid of raising funds for WWTW. Now, he is taking on his next challenge, the Marathon des Sables.

WWTW is taking a team of 19 runners to the Sahara Desert in October to take part in the 6-day ultra-marathon, which is often called the ‘toughest footrace on earth.’ The team will be running a total of 251km, with the longest stage being 91km long. We spoke to Chris to find out a bit more about how he is preparing for the challenge.

Why did you sign up to the MdS? 

Its very name called out to me. The toughest foot race on the planet. Why would you not!! 

Why have you chosen to support WWTW?

As a former Special Forces operator with a troop skill of trauma paramedic, I have the responsibility of treating some of the individuals that now require support from organisations like WWTW. The work they do is instrumental is supporting vulnerable former service personal whose life has been changed whilst they served their country. We have a shared responsibility. 

How’s your training going – what have you done so far, which milestones have you hit, and are you happy with where you are so far?

The very stop-start nature created due to the pandemic has made it difficult for all to stay motivated. I decided to take on another challenge whilst waiting for the MdS. I set out to take on the fastest known time for the Wainwrights, solo and unsupported. We managed to raise £5000 in the process. So the project was a huge success. 

What are your top tips for keeping up the motivation to train during lockdown?

It’s always important to understand your why. If this is personal you can focus on it when the times get hard. Try to look at every situation through a positive lens. If it’s too hot, at least you’re not getting wet, if it’s raining at least you’re not too hot. If you are able to do this, then you can overcome most hurdles. 

What do you see as the biggest challenge?

Well, as it’s the desert there are two obvious challenges, the heat, and the sand! I’m sure they will both provide testing moments but that is the nature of the challenge. 

What luxuries will you treat yourself to during the MdS?

I will not really have any luxuries during the event as I will save those for the finish line. I want to stay focused on the task at hand… unless you call a change of socks a luxury!!! 


What item of food are you taking which is your treat?

I will be using the same nutrition strategy I used on the Wainwrights. Resilient Nutrition throughout the day with Firepot dehydrated meals for long periods of rest. This will be supplemented with precision hydration and salt tablets. 

What will you be listening to help you through the marathon?

I don’t typically use music during training and events but when I do listen to things it would be podcasts such as High Performance for motivation and lessons or simply motivational speeches that remind you why you are putting yourself through this! 


Is there anything which you know you will be looking forward to at the end, before even beginning...

I look forward to only ever seeing the camel at the start line. If I’m seeing it during the race, I’m not going to be happy. That’s due to the horrible fact that if it overtakes you, you’re out!!! 

If you would like to support Chris, click here.