Gainsborough man hopes to inspire others after completing 1,000 mile challenge

A Gainsborough man has gone from being in the ‘worst shape’ of his life, to the fittest he has ever been in less than two years thanks to a series of challenges he set himself in 2021.
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Ben Spurr, 39, set himself three objectives - to complete 1,000 miles on his running app, complete 100 bodyweight and/or free-weight sessions and to attain his 10k personal best in his 10th official Gainsborough 10k race since the event started in 2012.

Weighing in at a lifetime heaviest of 18 stone 12lbs in December 2019, Ben had a lot of work to do.

However, having trained hard throughout the 2020 lockdown and implemented dietary restrictions to enable weight loss, the opportunity arose to complete a miraculous turnaround.

Ben Spurr set himself three challenges in 2021 including running 1,000 milesBen Spurr set himself three challenges in 2021 including running 1,000 miles
Ben Spurr set himself three challenges in 2021 including running 1,000 miles

Ben, who is a father of three, said: “I have gone from the worst shape of my life to the fittest I have ever been in less than two years.”

The 10k race day took place on November 7, and Ben managed a time of 45 minutes, 51 seconds, taking 12 seconds off his previous personal best from the same event in 2016.

Ben said: “To get my personal best on the event’s 10th race, having taken part in the first race in 2012, in memory of my beloved Nan, Isabel Salway, who left us in that same year, seemed both symbolic and special.”

As well as helping himself, Ben has also been an inspiration to others.

He said: “I helped my brother-in-law, Andy Callaghan, run his first ever 10k distance over a six-week period. We started with shorter distances and built from the foundations using manageable and achievable increments.

“And another achievement was helping my friend Matt Smith run more than 100 miles during the summer from being a beginner who had very little running experience.

“There are much faster and fitter people than myself out there, but I want people to know that you can still get back to being the best version of yourself, even after you have been at your absolute worst, as I was in 2019.

"If I can provide that small spark of inspiration for others, in the way that people have for me, then every mile will have been worth it.”

Ben is now looking ahead to the new year.