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From Friday 5 to Sunday 7 March, Year 13 student Finlay Whitton, pounded the streets of Liverpool to complete a gruelling double marathon to raise money for PAPYRUS, a national charity for the Prevention of Young Suicide. To date, Finlay has managed to raise £300 for the charity. 

Finlay, who only started running last spring, took on the David Goggins 4x4x48 challenge, which requires participants to run four miles every four hours, for 48 hours. Which in total amounts to 48 miles. 

With his muscles now recovered, we caught up with Finlay to find out why he decided to take on this demanding endurance challenge. 

“I began running at the start of the first lockdown since climbing gyms were closed and it was the perfect way to get outside; it didn’t take long for me to start enjoying the satisfaction of finishing longer distances after a sustained struggle. David Goggins, an ultra-marathon runner, is an idol of mine so when I heard about his 4x4x48 challenge, despite it being almost triple the furthest distance I’d run previously, it seemed like the perfect chance to raise money for charity and push my limits. A mental health and suicide charity felt like an obvious cause to support.

“Apart from several half-marathons, I’d never done an endurance challenge like this. I had enough experience from the last year to have a decent work capacity to build on. In February I increased the specificity of my running and spent the month almost simulating the challenge by alternating a few days with a high volume of running and a few days of rest.

“Once I’d started, the novelty of it kept me motivated and I got to do two of the runs with friends. I had a few hours between each 4-mile leg to focus on rehydrating and refuelling. I was mostly eating peanut butter, bananas, cereal, and Oreos. I would nap whenever I could, otherwise, I’d watch Star Wars.

“To anyone considering doing any endurance challenge, I’d say mental conditioning is just as important as physical. Run without music; take cold baths; wake up an hour earlier. Do everything you don’t want to do. As David Goggins says, ‘Do something every day that sucks’.”

To access Finlay’s JustGiving page, please click here

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