From Kroatia to China, from Malaysia to Ireland or the Lebanon – the Allianz World Run brought together running aficionados from across the globe. 51 Allianz teams formed and participated in the event to encourage health, well-being and team spirit within the global employee community.
Run for good
Next to health and well-being, all participating runners helped to raise money for the global SOS Children’s Villages community. By setting various milestones like running from one to 30 times around the world – and by actually reaching all of them – the Allianz community managed to raise a total of 600,000 Euros supporting 12 projects in different countries.
Every employee was encouraged to participate, from beginner to marathon pro, from board member to intern, on foot or in a wheelchair. Two of the most engaged participants, extreme runner Lesiba Lethoga from Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty South Africa and Andrea Bettello from AGCS Germany who only recently laced her running shoes up, share their experience.
When did you take up running as a favorit pastime?
Andrea: I had serious knee problems as a teenager. My doctor told me to go swimming to build up leg muscles. Five years ago, the pool I always went to closed because of construction works. I was a working mum of two small children and did not have the time to drive to another pool. So I started running instead.
The beginning was really difficult but I did not give up. I ran twice or three times a week. Slowly, I managed to increase the distance and speed. This was when I noticed that running was no longer a strenuous task, but in fact relaxing. Not only did I enjoy it but I really needed it.
Lesiba: I started serious running in 2011 with a marathon, which I eventually finished after cramping at 33 kilometers. Since then I have done countless marathons and ultramarathons. In fact I did one of the toughest ultramarathons in the world. It’s called Comrades Marathon and the distance is 90 kilometers.