A group of friends are preparing to run and row 124 miles in a single gym session to raise money to help tackle the Ebola crisis in West Africa.
The ten friends from Northwood – aged between 25 and 28 – will undertake the challenge on January 17 at the Body Studio, in Joel Street, Northwood Hills.
They aim to complete the task – the equivalent of nearly five marathons – in eight hours, using two rowing machines and two treadmills, which they are being allowed to use free of charge.
The group has so far raised more than £3,350 for the charity Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), also known as Doctors Without Borders, which has nearly 3,500 staff working in Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Mali to stop the spread of the disease. The money will go towards supplies and staff at Ebola treatment centres.
Emma Hawley, one of those taking part, said: “There was a lot of press coverage about Ebola a few months ago but this has really slowed down recently. Having watched documentaries about Ebola and kept up with the latest, it's clear that there's still so much more to be done. I think people think the disease has gone now because it's not in the papers but that's really not the case. Without further funding for charities such as MSF, the disease is being contained slower and claiming even more lives.”
Miss Hawley, 26, of Greenheys Close, Northwood, added: “None of us are particularly fit to be honest, which is why it is a real challenge. A couple of us have run 10km races but nothing more strenuous than that. We've been training since around October time, although this did slow down a bit over Christmas!”
Joining Miss Hawley will be Rob Commons, 27, Anni Bould, 25, Chris Evans, 26, Ollie Corke, 28, Reef Choudhury, 26, Nick Torr, 26, Danya Bakhbakhi, 27, Jezz Boyd, 27, and Jimmy Hutton, 27.
Almost 7,000 people have died since the Ebola outbreak was declared on March 22.
To donate, visit https://www.justgiving.com/200kmForMSF