On one of the hottest days of the year Dartford Living Co-owner and Designer, David Shafford, took part in a 24 miles in 24 hours challenge.

Inspired by a challenge we reported on last year, he wanted to do something similar but with a few noticeable differences! While the main part of the challenge was the same, run a mile every hour for 24 hours, he wanted to include various locations across the South East of England that were important to him. 

The plan was to visit 7 areas in the 24 hours to complete the miles so as well as running the 24 miles he would also be driving over 300 miles! 

We caught up with David to see how he got on.

Well you have now completed the challenge, how was it?

It was a lot tougher than I expected as it was one of the hottest days of the year and stopping between the miles, with sometimes a 80 mile drive in between, actually made things worse as my legs started seizing up and by the 15 mile mark I had hit a wall that was hard to push through! But I was determined to complete it so I just pushed on through.

Why did you want to do a challenge like this?

I have done runs in the past but wanted to do something different and more challenging that also took me to the places that meant something to me. 

Since my parents died 7 and 11 years ago, I have been raising money for the hospices that cared for them in their final days. I wanted to do something more than just running a set distance, so I was interested when I read about a 24 miles in 24 hours challenge.

I also felt the more I pushed myself the more people would see the effort I was putting in and want to sponsor me, which they have! 

Where did you run and why did you choose those locations?

I started off where I now live, in Rochester, then I moved on to Billericay, where I am from. It was then across to Dartford then on to Guildford, Whiteley, Southampton and the New Forest, where I have family, and then back again.

What was the hardest part of the run? 

I would say the hardest part of the run was when I finished the last mile in Southampton and then realised I still had 7 miles to run and 125 miles to drive and I was exhausted! but it was never in my thoughts to give up. I was just thinking that it was going to hurt in the morning!! Having people support me along the runs either by running a mile, cheering me on in person or messages really helped though and got me through to the end. 

What bit did you enjoy about the run!?

I enjoyed running through the New Forest, as it is beautiful down there,  but as a Southampton fan the highlight was running around St Mary’s Stadium even if it was only the outside! 

What causes did you raise money for?

I chose 4 different charities:

  • Cancer Research, as my Granny and Mum died from Cancer and I know a  lot of people affected by the illness.
  • St Lukes Hospice in Basildon, where my Mum worked as a doctor and who cared for her in her final days.
  • St Francis Hospice in Havering, where my Dad worked as Director of Corporate services and who cared for him in his final days.
  • ellenor in Gravesend and Dartford, as my parents always said you should support the hospice in the area you live and we have worked with them and tried to support them a lot through Dartford Living. 

Can people still donate?

You can still donate to the cause by visiting 

uk.virginmoneygiving.com/DavidSHAFFORD2424 

What is your next challenge?

Well I can definitely say I will not be running a marathon but i’m thinking about maybe a triathlon. Watch this space!