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Ex-Athlete Completes Marathon In Six Metre Back Garden Raising £20,000 For NHS

Ex-Athlete Completes Marathon In Six Metre Back Garden Raising £20,000 For NHS

A former athlete who was feeling the boredom of quarantine has spent his birthday completing a marathon in his six metre (19 foot) back garden and has raised over £20,000 ($24,800) for the NHS at the same time.

James Campbell, 32 (today), decided to put this Wednesday morning to much better use than most of us amid the coronavirus pandemic, after he tweeted to tell people that if he got at least 10,000 retweets he would attempt the impressive feat.

His post quickly went viral, racking up more than 54,000 retweets and likes, and now the sports masseuse and gym worker has completed the gruelling 26.2 mile run after starting it at 9am this morning.


The former javelin thrower from Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, has so far raised over £20,000, smashing his initial £10,000 ($12,400) goal.

Before the marathon James said: "My work stopped in the last few weeks, as I'm sure it has for a lot of people, and by Monday afternoon I felt like I was starting to lose the plot a bit.


"I just thought 'what is the most stupid thing I can do in isolation in my house, and what is the most painful thing I can put myself through? I took one look at the garden and thought 'right, I'll run a marathon'.

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"I have never trained for a marathon, I have never thought about running a marathon before. The furthest I have run before is about 15 to 20km - but as long as I'm raising money, I don't mind if I'm hurting myself."

James was previously British number one in javelin throwing, but was forced to give up the sport in his twenties after undergoing three shoulder operations.


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He still plays football regularly but estimates the furthest he has ever run before is around 12 miles - less than half the distance of a marathon.

Speaking about his decision to raise money for the NHS, James said: "The moment I thought about it, I knew it had to be the NHS.

"People are feeling really proud of the NHS at the moment. There was only ever going to be one charity to support at the moment, with the scenes that are everywhere. For it to have had this response already is absolutely amazing."


Let's all bring some positivity, support and fun to anyone who might find themselves in isolation as a result of the coronavirus spread. Need some entertainment? Join Isolation Nation:

Featured Image Credit: YouTube/Vinco Sport Ltd

Topics: Coronavirus, Community, UK

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Rebecca Shepherd

I'm Becky - a journalist at LADbible. I graduated with a First Class BA in Journalism before going on to cover criminal court cases, medical tribunals and breaking news for the national media - which inevitably and eventually became as glum as it sounds. Can often be found rocking a bag for life - which I made a 'thing' way before Rihanna. You can contact me at [email protected]