A man from Amersham will take part in the London Marathon this year – but not in the way you might expect.
Tom Harrison wanted to do something a bit different and so will be walking the 26.2-mile route on April 23 backwards.
He will start the race behind the other runners, setting his own pace and following the kerb. He says he’ll listen to his body and go slow and steady.
Through this unique feat, he will be raising money for the British Red Cross, a charity which is supporting those affected by the war in Ukraine and the earthquakes in Turkey and Syria.
At the time of writing, he has raised more than £2,000 for the charity.
Tom said: “Hopefully, it will inspire other people to do their own quirky thing – it’s nice when people do things that are unique and challenge the normal way of thinking. Most people would say, ‘you’re mad’, but maybe the people running forwards are mad! I’ve found walking backwards more grounding – it’s a bit like yoga – you’re focusing on it more and it’s good for the body and brain.
“I think the backwards marathon, physiologically, can have benefits. People will cheer me on and help me if I’m going the wrong way. It will make me smile and will entertain them. I’ll be looking at what’s been done, not what’s to come and see how far I’ve come. I’ll make it work to my advantage. Whatever happens, I’m going to come first as I think I’m the only one doing it backwards. It’s not a typical way of doing it, so I’ll be surprised if there is. If so, I’ll make friends with them, and we can help each other out!”
As well as receiving donations from friends and family on his JustGiving page, he also held a cake sale to raise funds.
If you would like to donate, visit justgiving.com/fundraising/backwardsmarathon