This runner ran 161.5 miles while fasting during Ramadan and has raised £55,000 for charity

Jane McGuire
Photo credit: Haroon Mota

From Runner's World

34-year-old Haroon Mota from Coventry laced up his running shoes to run 260km (161.5 miles) while fasting during Ramadan, as part of the London Marathon 2.6 challenge. Haroon raised £52,000 for charity, and has said he has been ‘overwhelmed’ by the support he received.

Haroon set out at 6.30pm to run his final kilometres on Sunday 23 May, the 30th day of Ramadan.'I was extremely excited to reach the final leg of the challenge after reaching my £50,000 fundraising target earlier that morning' Haroon told Runner's World. He ran 10K each evening at around 8pm, during his 16 to 18 hour fast and was fundraising for his chosen charity, Penny Appeal. 'The support has been coming in globally with donations being received from all parts of the world' Haroon said, 'despite the pandemic and financial uncertainties around the economy I’ve been overwhelmed with so much generosity from friends, family and the wider community, and this really spurred me on to carry on pushing myself.'

Before the COVID-19 pandemic caused running events all over the world to be cancelled and rescheduled, Haroon had planned to run four of the World Marathon Majors in London, Berlin, Chicago and New York.

‘I hadn’t actually prepared for or trained for this, it was more the spur of the moment deciding to make this my version of the two point six challenge and I only decided this on the 4th day of Ramadan' Haroon admitted.

Speaking to Runner's World after the event, Haroon said, 'I decided to stream my final run live on facebook so people could see my journey to the end. Hundreds of people tuned in and sent their well wishes and this really spurred me on as I raced to complete the last 10km. I had two bicycles following me for the live coverage and by the end of the run, a few cars as a convoy as well which made the experience quite glorious'.

Talking about the challenges of running white fasting, Haroon said, 'I feel extremely proud of the challenge I’ve undertaken. It was such hard work staying motivated to run daily for 30 days whilst feeling thirsty, hungry, experiencing dehydration and fatigue, but it’s been such a successful fundraiser that it makes every bit of the struggle worthwhile.'

'I ran voluntarily, but refugees are fleeing war and extreme poverty every day and I ran for them. The donations are still coming in, and I can’t thank everyone enough for the tremendous support.'

You can still donate on Haroon's Just Giving page here.

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