Hellah is the embodiment of positivity, athleticism, and community leadership. He grew up playing soccer barefoot on dirt fields in West Africa, Mali, where the focus of sport was camaraderie. His method of using action, content, and events to build friendships and drive change defines Hellah’s career as a runner and wildly popular running community leader.
A run streaker, Hellah has run every single day since May 15, 2017. He simply can’t get enough! His initial goal was to run just 10 minutes daily for two weeks—no excuses—to overcome his dislike of the sport, which had been made un-fun by years of rigorous, high-level soccer training. “I was afraid of it, and I wanted to hold myself accountable,” he said. As his streak extended from weeks to years, Hellah has built a large social following. Folks clearly find meaning in his daily effort and gear knowledge and have joined him in his pursuits.
Hellah turned his everyday commitment into a historical record in 2021 when he became the first black man to solo run across America: 3,061 miles, 14 states, 84 days. He pledged his run to the nonprofit Soles4Souls and raised over $50,000 to provide shoes for those in need. Today, he lives in New Jersey and uses his public platform to advocate for societal progress through running.
Once asked why he trains the way he does, Hellah answered, “To be the best, man.” He just wants to be the very best he can personally be—and he wants to help others do the same. And though his personal path is unique, his sentiment and warmth resonate with all who cross his path. In short, Hellah’s approach to life is infectious—and his journey is just beginning.