East Texan Ultramarathon Runner Covers Hundreds Of Miles For Charity

In his day job, Paul Stone writes for the Palestine Herald-Press. However, his hobby is a bit more physically demanding. Stone runs in ultra marathons.

"The ultra marathon really appealed to me because while you certainly have to have some physical ability," Stone says, "It's really more a contest of mental will to get into these longer distances, fifty miles and up."

Next week, Paul will race in the "Badwater Ultra," a 135 mile race through Death Valley. In summer. Uphill. With no scheduled breaks. "You have the prospect of blisters, nausea, sleep deprivation," Stone says, "There's many things to deal with to cover that distance within the sixty hour time limit."

The race is thought by some to be the most grueling continuous footrace on the planet. You have to apply and be invited to run, and even if you finish, the race has no prizes. Stone uses the race as a fundraiser, collecting money for Living Alternatives.

Bev Kline, Director of Living Alternatives, says "We are incredibly humbled by Paul and just the work that he does out there running, I mean it's unfathomable that he would put himself through this in order to raise money for our young girls and their babies."

Paul raised ten thousand dollars last year for his 37 hours of running, money that went to continuing education for young mothers. "Whether I win or lose, or get first or ninth or fiftieth, or don't finish at all, is really relatively insignificant. The ministry is really what it's all about," Paul says.