FOR MOST, running one marathon is enough of an accomplishment, but one Horsham teacher took it up a notch by running the equivalent of 45 marathons in 50 days.
Farlington School geography teacher John Dwyer, 35, set off from the Coliseum in Rome on July 15. Running every inch of the way through France, Switzerland and Belgium, he accumulated 1,200 miles and raised thousands of pounds for Marie Curie nurses.
It was not all plain sailing, however. John said: “I knew I would encounter some stiffness and injuries but I ran a number of marathons in real pain. It became a serious mental battle to put this aside and carry on.”
The schedule meant that John could have some much needed rest days. He said: “After each marathon I was very sore.
“I tended to seize up immediately afterwards, limber up by the evening then be raring to go after a good night’s sleep.
“It’s remarkable what the body will contend with to be honest.”
Hannah Currell, 26, John’s girlfriend, was there every step of the way providing support. She said: “It was challenging but exciting. The logistics of the journey were tough to organise but I enjoyed helping John along.”
The last leg of the trip in the UK finished in London. John said: “It was amazing. So wonderful to see everyone in Trafalgar Square, I’ll never forget the feeling of euphoria crossing the line.”
The fundraising challenge was inspired by personal experience, as John sadly lost a friend to breast cancer a few years ago.
He said: “Jane Mayoh left behind two wonderful teenage children and her husband, Glenn. Jane received amazing support during her fight with cancer and this is my way of trying to give something back to the charity.”
Another key inspiration for the running challenge was his friend Rob Gauntlett, who died tragically in a climbing accident in 2009.
John said: ”Rob inspired so many people to achieve their goals and he will always be missed by family and friends.”
He has so far raised more than his £4,000 target. He said: “It makes every step of the way worthwhile. The Marie Curie nurses do such a wonderful job caring for cancer sufferers and their families.”
Jonnie Goyer, headmistress at Farlington said: “John’s achievement in running every part of the journey from Rome to London is amazing.
“The commitment, determination and sheer will power of this feat are impressive beyond words. All of us at Farlington are proud to have been associated with his journey.”
To read about his journey and to donate visit: www.runhomesfromrome.weebly.com.