Everyday Adventurers: The Run Around the World – Rosie Swale-Pope

Rosie Swale-Pope is the only person; man or woman, to ever run around the world solo and unsupported. 
Everyday Adventurers Rosie Swale-Pope - Ran around the world
Rosie Swale-Pope ran over 20,000 miles over the course of 5 years and successfully ran around the world. Photo from: http://rosieswalepope.co.uk/
"The biggest adventure is everyday life. Make it count."
Rosie Swale-Pope
Writer, Adventurer, Marathon Runner, and Motivational Speaker

Solo Run Around the World

I’m always looking for inspiring true stories of people, and their adventures and a friend recommended I read Rosie Swale-Pope’s book “Just a Little Run Around the World: 5 Years, 3 Packs of Wolves and 53 Pairs of Shoes.”
From the very first page, I felt like I was a friend of Rosie’s as she wrote about her heartbreak over losing her husband, Clive, to prostrate cancer and how that inspired her to run around the world and raise awareness. Her story is inspiring and extraordinary, and she makes you feel like you’re right there with her as she recounts her experience. I laughed, I cried and savored every page to make it last as long as I could.
Rosie Swale-Pope Run Around the World - Photo from: http://rosieswalepope.co.uk/
In October 2, 2003, on her 57th birthday, Rosie Swale-Pope said goodbye to her children and grandchildren and set out from her small cottage in Tenby, Wales to run around the world. Five years, over 20,000 miles, and 53 pairs of shoes later she successfully finished her run. She ran harnessed to her custom-made cart, which was designed for sleeping, shelter, and storage. She was able to rent out her cottage to pay for her journey. 
Her route around the world was through the Northern Hemisphere. “A lovely little circle through Europe, Russia, Siberia, Alaska, Canada, America, Greenland and Iceland. It was the most logical, though not the most comfortable, way around the world.”
As part of her preparations, she learned six languages: Dutch, German, Polish, Lithuanian, Latvian and Russian.
Her run around the world helped raise awareness and money for the Prostate Cancer Charity. She encouraged others to get checked out sooner rather than later. Her run also raised money for an orphanage in Russia which provides children with care and education. 
The people she meets, the places she runs through, the adversity she faces but overcomes along the way seems like something out of a surreal movie. Rosie is the only person who has ever run around the world.
"My run became much bigger than me; it became a metaphor for life. It made me see that everything in life is an adventure and a miracle, whether it's running across a glacier or boiling water to make a cup of tea."
Rosie Swale-Pope
Writer, Adventurer, Marathon Runner, and Motivational Speaker
Rosie Swale-Pope Run Around the World - Road Signs
Rosie Swale-Pope | Run Around the World - Photo from: http://rosieswalepope.co.uk/
Rosie Swale-Pope Run Around the World Finish Line
5 years, over 20,000 miles later, and Rosie successfully finishes her run around the world. Photo from: http://rosieswalepope.co.uk

Rosie’s Life of Adventure

From the very start I was inspired by Rosie. Little did I know that this was not her first adventure. Rosie’s Irish grandmother once told her, “Start with your dreams, not your circumstances.” Rosie has been living her dreams every since. 
Here’s a list of her amazing and several record breaking adventures:
1971 – Rosie, her first husband, Colin Swale, and their daughter Eve, sail around the world in a 30 foot catamaran. They become the first people to round Cape Horn in a Catamaran.  
1983Rosie becomes the fourth woman to sail solo across the Atlantic from the UK to the US aboard a 15ft cutter that she found in a cowshed in Wales. She navigated by the stars and with the aid of her Timex watch.
1984 – Wanting to return to Cape Horn, Rosie treks 3,000 miles solo on horseback through Chile. She writes about it in “Back to Cape Horn” in 1986.
1987Walks 1,375 miles around Wales during the winter. She wrote about her experience in her book “Winter Wales.
1995Rosie runs her first marathon in London.
1997Rosie runs 151 miles across the Sahara in the Marathon des Sables across the Sahara, in six days, carrying all her equipment. Also in 1997 she runs through Romania to Hungary.
1999Runs solo 1,000 miles across Iceland. She ran from the Arctic Circle at the top to the capital city of Reykjavik.
2000Runs the Comrades Marathon, in South Africa – 56 miles or the equivalent of 2 marathons in 11 hours, 1 minute, 1 second.
2000-2001 – Runs through the Balkans from Macedonia to the border. Rosie was held up at gunpoint at one point during the run, but was able to escape and reach the border. She then flies to Skopje; runs across closed borders into Kosovo and through Montenegro to northern Albania through deep snow and deserted villages.
2001Runs 1,360 miles across Cuba in 46 days and enters and runs the Havana Marathon along the way.
2003 – In April, she ran 1,060 miles (1,700 km) across Nepal to raise money for the Nepal Trust, and established a new world-record time of 68 days.
On October 2 of 2003, on her 57th birthday, Rosie sets off to run around the world across the northern hemisphere. Five years later she arrives back in Temby, Wales where she began.
2015 – Rosie begins a two year, 3,371 mile run across America from New York to California.
Currently – Preparing to run from London to Berlin.

71 and as young as ever

As you can see, Rosie is an example of someone who lives her life to the fullest. She proves that age is just a number and as you get older, you should do more, not less. At the age of 71, she’s not showing any signs of slowing down. Below is an update she posted on her Twitter page earlier this November.
What can I say…I want to live my life like Rosie.
November 13th, 2017 update and wise words from Rosie via her Twitter feed.
Life sure looks good on Rosie at age 71.

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