What a journey! #BenToBen - complete...

Tuesday, 3rd May 2016

Ben to Ben Done!

12 months training and planning for 8 days worth of effort and the challenge is done...

The Ben to Ben challenge started with 10 of us walking up Ben Nevis in the snow. The views on the way up were well worth the 3 and a half hours trek to the top. The following couple of days would see us cycling 250 miles through some of the best scenery Scotland and Cumbria has to offer before a sunny walk up Scafell. The cycle out of Scafell to Preston was one of the toughest and the hilliest days cycling of the week. Preston to Snowdon was probably the most frustrating ride of the week, having to negotiate Wigan and Warrington town centres. Once we got in to North Wales the roads turned hilly but brilliant.

After another sunny walk up Snowdon we had 3 more days of cycling to do which would take us to Big Ben in London. As Big Ben chimed 12 on Saturday lunch time, we arrived to complete 700 miles of cycling and the national 3 peaks in 7 days.

Sunday was my 8 th day of the challenge and the finale to the whole week, The London marathon. As I set off running the marathon my legs felt surprisingly good. The first 16 miles went well, but as you would expect my legs tired. I managed to keep a consistent pace throughout the whole race and with the encouragement of the spectators and my friends and family I jogged over the finish line in a very happy time of 4hours 34minutes.

People keep asking me “Was it hard to complete”? My reply is: “Yes it was hard but not as hard as I thought it would be.” People think of the #BentoBen challenge as a physical challenge, which it is, but your body adjusts to it throughout the week. 50% of the challenge is the mental side of it and how you deal with the pressure and expectation of such a huge challenge. I am happy to say that there was never a time that my body or mind wanted to give up.

“Would you do it again?" My answer is: “I don’t need to, I've done it once, so next time I'll do something different”…

By John Bannister, Exercise Consultant

Banny took on this incredible challenge in aid of Pendleside Hospice - find out more about his incredible journey here