THE first human to swim a lap of Britain admits he emerged from the water this week far from looking a fitness magazine muse.
Ross Edgley’s tongue was disintegrating from too long being in salt water, he had a suspected torn shoulder and with an open neck wound that had been fusing to his bedsheets on naps in a catamaran.
This mission was not just about trying to push his own body to the limits. In his five months at sea, Edgley hoped to inspire others, the world over, to get out of their comfort zones and try something new – like a ParkRun or an open water swim.
Leg Rehab Begins 😊 Tomorrow the @vivobarefoot sports scientists will assess the damage (eek) & toll the #greatbritishswim has had on my feet, legs & running biomechanics! As always I will be documenting the good, bad and ugly so together we can collectively learn #GuineaPig 😊 pic.twitter.com/bxpWcnO8nY— Ross Edgley (@RossEdgley) November 7, 2018
Edgley completes his mission as Australian businesswoman Mina Guli sets out on her big test: 100 marathons in 100 days. Guli is a self-confessed bad runner and has admitted to media before setting off that she gets nervous when others suggest running with her because she would probably be too slow.
These are both ordinary people making extraordinary feats in a bid to inspire other everyday humans in making a difference.
What more timely reminder could Ballarat need right now than this? We are one week out from The Ballarat Foundation’s inaugural Run for a Cause – and event created, designed and run by Ballarat people, for Ballarat people.
The Foundation’s aim is to highlight and support community organisations working on the frontlines of different social welfare issues each year. First up is tackling hunger across the region in a bid for more efficient food distribution and meals projects.
Run for a Cause’s catchcry is all you need to do is run, is walk, is move.
Emmaus Primary School pupils told The Courier this week the event was great for exercise, helping a lot of people and spreading awareness on issues that needed attention, like hunger which was often hidden in the community. They felt getting out there and having a go, challenge themselves a bit, was the best way to make a difference and encourage others to help.
Such an effort may not be as dramatic a gesture as Edgley swimming the British coastline or Guli running a daily marathon effort but it can be just as headline grabbing and impressing in Ballarat when thousands are out on the same course.
A key message Edgley wanted to get across in his brutal open water swim was for people to focus on allowing their bodies to be fit for purpose, in doing what they wanted to do – like a fun run.
“I'm doing this challenge to encourage people to do what they love and not worry about body aesthetics,” Edgley told sponsor Red Bull. An adventurer, Edgley is known for climbing a rope the height of Everest in one go and running a marathon while dragging a car behind him.
Guli started with the New York Marathon and has a global schedule for her Running Dry mission in drawing attention to increasing water scarcity and what the everyday person could do – like turning off the tap while cleaning their teeth to make a difference.
Throughout this journey, I am excited to meet with communities directly impacted by the water crisis and those working to solve it. Along the way, I will be sharing their stories to raise awareness of the global water problem. These stories are why I run. #RunningDrypic.twitter.com/ABDBqcFMfS— Mina Guli (@minaguli) November 6, 2018
All steps add up. We have a chance to tackle the complex issue of hunger in our region next week and all we have to do is move.
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