Meet the inspirational Army veteran who will run FIVE marathons in five days for charity
A British Army veteran is taking on an extreme challenge to run five marathons in five days to raise funds for families with poorly children.
Paul Ahmed, 32, is preparing to cover a distance of 130 miles this May to raise funds for the Charlie Cookson Foundation.
Mr Ahmed - a personal trainer who runs fitness bootcamps abroad - is no stranger to keeping fit, but admits this will be a big challenge for him having never run a marathon before.
The South Shields dad was moved by the plight of families who have poorly children and wanted to do what he could to support them.
The Charlie Cookson Foundation was set up by parents Sarah and Chris in honour of the son Charlie who died aged two in October 2013.
It supports families of seriously-ill children by providing help towards the financial burden of essential nursing facilities, bills, rent and other money difficulties that arise from full-time care.
The couple sadly lost their second son Carter Cookson in January after a battle to find him a new heart.
Paul, who worked as a physical training instructor with the Army for 13 years, said: “I will be running a marathon a day for five days back to back, starting on Wednesday, May 8. “Hopefully it will inspire others to get up, get fit and get active while raising money for the charity.
“I have been working closely together with the foundation on the event and hope to smash the £1,000 target.
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“I have done half marathons before but I have not done a marathon, so it will keep things interesting!
“Nobody trains for that high a level so I am just going to get as many miles in as I can.
“It is the first time I have done anything for the foundation, although I have done charity work for the likes of Help for Heroes previously.”
And on the day of the final marathon, on Sunday, May 12, Paul plans to hold a 25 minute HIIT training session with those gathered to support him when he finishes at the Bamburgh pub in South Shields.
He hopes the final marathon will take him no longer than eight hours to complete, meaning he hopes to be at the finish line for around 2pm.
He added: “Its just about supporting the charity and hopefully it will bring the community of South Shields together on the last day and we can just enjoy it.
“I have had fantastic support from the community.”
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