Fancy a Challenge? How about running 7 marathons in 7 continents in just over 5 days!

I love hearing stories about people who push the physical limits of the human body, and take on extraordinary challenges and adventures. Top of my Herculean list at the moment is Richard Donovan, who has just completed a Global Marathon Challenge by running 7 marathons in 7 continents in just over 5 days (and that includes travel!).

Donovan’s recent run around the world began in Antarctica where he battled strong winds, blinding snow and sub-zero temperatures. He then flew to sunny Cape Town, followed by Dubai, London (in the snow!), Toronto, Santiago, and finally Sydney where temperatures rose to 33o!

He completed this gruelling challenge in a total of 130 hours and 8 minutes. During this time, he ran 295km (183 miles), spent over 62 hours ‘resting’ on planes, and flew 43,000km!

To put this into perspective, running a marathon (26.2 miles) is a pretty tough challenge in itself. However with enough groundwork, plus a beefy mental attitude, I believe it’s well within most people’s reach.

Running back-to-back marathons, however, takes things to a whole new impressive level. This type of endurance event is reserved for the hard core, those who are fit enough and sufficiently foolish to attempt it.

But Donovan’s challenge was no measly trot around a few city parks. Not only did he run a huge distance over a short period of time, he also had to contend with sleep deprivation, jet lag, and extreme temperature and weather changes ranging from deep snow to intense heat!

Compare this to your own training over the last few weeks. If you’ve wimped out of going for a run around the block because you thought you might get a bit damp or cold (especially during the recent snow and rain), then let this story put you to shame! These are just mild inconveniences in comparison!

For further inspiration, and to read more about Donovan’s challenge, and GOAL, the charity he ran for, visit his website at

Posted by Heather Waghorn.