Bristol

Benjamin Smith challenge to run 401 marathons in 401 days

Benjamin Smith Image copyright PA
Image caption Benjamin Smith is encouraging people to join him for anything from one mile to the full distance.

A man who ran his first marathon three years ago is now attempting to run 401 marathons in 401 days.

Benjamin Smith, 33, will run the 26.2 mile distance every day for just over 13 months to raise funds for anti-bullying and equality causes in the UK.

Mr Smith, from Bristol was "badly bullied for years at school" but after coming out as gay two years ago, has "never been happier".

He hopes to raise £250,000 for Stonewall and Kidscape.

The account manager, said the two charities are "close to my heart".

'Get people involved'

After becoming "hooked" on marathon running Mr Smith said he got his confidence and self-esteem back.

The preparation for this challenge began two years ago and he tested his limits by running 18 marathons in 2014.

"I looked at running a marathon every single day for a year - so 365 marathons," he said.

"But I liked the idea of rounding it up and adding the last one as a victory lap."

The challenge will see him take in 309 locations throughout the UK with the vast majority being organised by UK running clubs.

Nine will be official marathons, of which Bournemouth will be the only event he runs twice.

"My other half is doing his PhD at Bournemouth University so we have an affiliation with it," he said.

He will be encouraging people to join him for anything from one mile to the full distance.

He is due to begin the challenge on 1 September.

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