Christophe Devers – I want to run 50 marathons before 50

We’ve launched the Albera Stories because behind every runner, there is a story of efforts, resilience, self-sacrifice… and always friendship, love and well-being. As we all can collectively learn from every one of you, Albera Expeditions decided to share your story.


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After collapsing on his first 10k back in 2015, Christophe not only decided to run a marathon, but to run 50 marathons before his 50.
Here is his story.


Tell us about your objective of running 50 marathons, and how it came to your mind.

Sports always played a big role in my life. I’ve played football for almost 20 years and tennis for more than 10 years. When I decided to live together with my fiancée, we moved away from where I used to live. My priorities changed and after a while, sports didn’t play a big part in my life anymore. I started to gain weight and I needed to put it under control. In April 2015, I participated to my first 10k but I never made it to the finish line. I collapsed after 9 km and was brought to the hospital. I had to stay at the intensive care unit for one night and 3 days later, I was allowed to go home. After a full check-up, the doctor advised me not to participate in long runs such as a marathon: that was the moment when I felt motivated to go and train for a marathon.
I had to take it step by step: I contacted a personal coach and I started training with him in December 2015. In April 2017, I completed my first marathon in less than 4 hours. It was unbelievable. I then decided to set myself a long term goal and came up with the idea of running 50 marathons before I turn 50.  I became addicted to running and since then, it became a real purpose.


How is all your life planned around this objective ? 

Managing my running daily isn’t always easy. I am very grateful to my fiancée as she gives me the opportunity to chase my dream. We have 2 small kids and it is not easy on her. I try to plan my runs so as to have the least effect on their daily routine. If I am in marathon preparation, it will be more difficult as I run 5 times a week at that time. In spring and summer, I try to do my runs when they are in bed but if I have a longer session, I usually go straight after work. This means that I will have dinner alone but I will be back home on time so I can help to put them to bed. In the weekend, I usually do my long run in the morning so we still have the afternoon to spend together.
My friends admire my passion for running but a lot of them say they would never be able to do it the way I do it. Timing is difficult but once you have planned it, you just have to go on. The rule is to never skip a planned run.


Tell us your best memory of a running adventure you had ?

When I go on a holiday, I bring my running shoes with me.
There is nothing funnier than discovering a new city or region in your running shoes!
It gives you some memories you will never forget! Running on the beach in Thailand was unforgettable. Last year, we went on a holiday in France, Bretagne. We rented a house and I went running 3 or 4 times during our holiday. It was so nice to discover all the different spots. I ran on the beach, climbed hills and crossed bridges. I can still remember my runs by heart.


The first word that comes to your mind when you think about South of France ?

I’ve never been in South of France, but good food, good wine and beautiful nature. When we went to Bretagne last year, I really fell in love with the country. Nothing better than some nice cheese and wine outside, on your terrace.


Tell us where your perfect runcation would be and how you would imagine it.

My perfect runcation would be in Thailand. I fell in love with that country when I visited it with my fiancée 6 years ago.
You have such a big variety in nature that it looked amazing to run through the jungle and end up on a beautiful beach. Actually, it sounds almost like the one you are offering on your site! I don’t think it can get much nicer than that. Combine this with some relaxing massage and scuba diving. Heaven on earth!


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