Two marathons a day for 17 days straight- Hampshire women complete gruelling charity challenge

WATCH: Debs and Sarah cross the finish line after 17 days straight.


Two women from Hampshire have completed a gruelling endurance challenge- running two marathons a day for 17 days, the equivalent of John O'Groats to Lands End.

PE teacher Debbie Costen and her friend, personal trainer Sarah Cotton from Basingstoke, had hoped to run the actual route from Scotland to Cornwall, and began training a year ago. But lockdown restrictions meant they had to complete the distance locally.

Their amended route took them daily from Newbury to Wootton Rivers and back, mainly along the Kennet and Avon canal.

On Easter Sunday they completed their gruelling undertaking, and were welcomed by friends and family in Woolhampton

We are two slightly mad ladies who like to run long distances. We’ve done a number of events together but nothing of this magnitude.

Debbie Costen, charity runner

The pair were running to raise money for Naomi House and Jacksplace near Winchester, which provide vital respite and end-of-life care for children and young people.

Both women endured terrible blisters, bruises and aching muscles. On several days they had to cut their runs short for fear of doing permanent damage, and having to stop altogether. But they completed the vast majority of the distance, mostly with smiles on their faces!

This was their final Instagram post on day 17:

Naomi House tweeted their support for the two women, who are now enjoying a well earned rest.

For more information about their fundraising challenge please click here.

The charity needs to raise £9.2 million annually to provide a complete service to support local life limited and life threatened children, young adults and their families on good days, difficult days and last days.