Former European 1500m finalist Colin McCourt has set his sights on tackling the marathon after completing his latest challenge.
McCourt recently fulfilled a quest set by his friends to break 16 minutes for 5km during 2017, or face the prospect of having all their names tattooed onto his body.
He clocked 15:38 last month at the Podium 5k event in Burnley, winning £1700 in the process.
With nothing on the line on this occasion, he gave his fans the task of choosing his next challenge, with a sub-2 hour and 30-minute marathon coming out on top.
McCourt, originally from Bournemouth, believes that whatever was chosen would have been a difficult task in hand.
On his Instagram account, he said: “The sub 2:30 marathon has been chosen by the people of social media, with the sub-4-minute mile coming in at a close second.
“Either challenge would have been very tough though, so there was no real preference.”
Having been a middle-distance runner as a professional, he’s entering a whole new environment when tackling the 26.2-mile event, but still wants to train by his own accordance.
“I want this to be a bit different to normal marathon training, incorporating some different programmes,” he said.
“Despite the distance, I still want to focus on speed, which will help me to remain strong.”
Over the last year, McCourt has picked up a strong social media following, and is planning on using his presence to educate any avid runners.
“I’ve got a few plans to help my followers throughout this journey on my YouTube page,” he said.
“Some of the ideas include nutrition and strength and conditioning so I’m excited to give out any advice I can along the way.”
McCourt, 32, retired from professional athletics in 2012 after failing to qualify for the London Olympics.
He then ballooned to 94kg (14st 11lb), but found his love for running again while training for the initial challenge set by 17 of his closest friends.