John Sennett from Shirley has raised over £2,000 for charity by completing 21 marathons in 21 days.
Despite being able to walk, John, 26, completed the marathons in a wheelchair. The distance he covered would be the equivalent of travelling from Southampton to Turin, Italy.
“I wanted to show that the term able-bodied is irrelevant. People that use a wheelchair are able, they’re just able in a different way. Completing one marathon wouldn’t have been enough for me. Running it wouldn’t have been right.”
Inspired by his older sister Rosemarie, John used the marathons to raise money for Crohn’s and Colitis UK, a charity that works with those affected by these conditions to achieve a better quality of life, improve services available to them, and find a cure.
“My sister was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease at 19. People don’t expect things to happen to them and my sister certainly didn’t expect to be using a wheelchair all her life. By completing my marathons in a wheelchair, it meant I was able to use my sister’s experience as an inspiration for those either with Crohn’s Disease or individuals who use a wheelchair. I knew the money raised would go into research to hopefully find a treatment.”
Crohn’s disease is a lifelong condition which occurs when parts of the digestive system become inflamed. The exact cause of Crohn’s disease is unknown and there is currently no cure.
After only eight weeks of training, John’s first marathon started on 10 March with his last on the 5 April.
“It feels weird now that it’s over. Physically I’m a bit tired, with some grazes near my fingers, mentally I’m in tip top shape, and I’m feeling very proud of what I’ve achieved.”
John’s next fundraising challenge will take place on 25 April where he will attempt to lift 100,000kg in a day at Pure Gym in Bitterne. This time he hopes to raise money for charity Young Minds UK by showing the benefits exercise can have on mental health.
You can follow more of John’s story on twitter @thestoryofJS. Donations can still be made by visiting https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/johns21marathonsin21days