Community fundraiser, Nick Bloy, shares his blog which talks about why he decided to take on an epic world-first challenge to raise money for The Prince's Trust.

On a cold October morning, I found myself huddled under a duvet, my hotel room radiator broken, my breath evaporating as I exhaled in the crisp air, contemplating the challenge ahead.

At least me, Adam and Robbie were going to be facing this together.

Adam was the veteran – an experienced ultra-distance runner.

However, Robbie and I had not run further than a marathon, and it turned out that by running from Fort William in Scotland to Caernarfon in Wales via the UK’s three national peaks, we'd be running the equivalent of over 16 marathons in just 8 days!

With the challenge a few months away, I unfortunately picked up a stress fracture injury in my right foot, which left me unable to run for six weeks. By mid-September, my foot had healed enough for me to use the cross-trainer. Against all the odds, with just a week to go, I managed two 23-mile back-to-back runs. Sadly the news wasn’t quite so positive for Robbie, who succumbed to a long-term knee injury and was forced to pull out.

I had no idea how I would get through the next eight days, but a timely text from Robbie set the tone for the challenge ahead:

Be brave; be not afraid of what lies ahead, for it will forge your character as the hammer on a blacksmith’s anvil.

Adam and I set off from Fort William in total darkness. Ahead of us lay Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon, plus the small matter of 450 miles. Day one started really well and we successfully climbed Ben Nevis and covered 55 miles in around 15 hours.

We were due to run 65 miles from Bridge of Orchy to Glasgow on day two however, as we hit Loch Lomond, my feet had deteriorated badly. Meanwhile, Adam was also flagging badly with back troubles, and with about 24 miles still to go, we made the tough decision to call it a day.

We agreed to take Monday off and start again on Tuesday. We rested as planned on day three. Up early on day four and with my feet thoroughly taped, we set off for Keswick from Lockerbie at around 6.30am.

Despite everything, we somehow kept each other going, for 8 days. It was an amazing experience, with truly breath-taking moments (and views), and despite the pain, we both came out the other side stronger.

Reaching Caernarfon Castle on day eight was a great moment. We achieved more than we dreamed possible. Against all the odds, we climbed all three peaks and ran over 300 miles in the space of approximately six days.

People often ask me why I take on challenges that are so physically and mentally demanding.

For me it’s about three key things:

  1. Pushing myself beyond any preconceived limits I have and hopefully inspiring others
  2. The shared experiences and friendships forged along the way
  3. The sense of achievement from raising awareness and funding for an awesome charity

Speaking of charity, we wouldn’t have kept pushing ourselves as hard as we did if it wasn't for the fact that we were raising much-needed funds for The Prince’s Trust.

Thankfully, I have had family and friends to help me through bad times as well as celebrate successes. However, having attended one of the worst state schools in the country, with a GCSE pass rate of around 20 per cent (the national average is currently 75 per cent), I am all too aware of those young people who didn’t have the same support.

It’s for those individuals that The Prince’s Trust can really make a difference, whether through education, mentoring or financial assistance.

We have already raised over £10,000 for The Prince’s Trust and will continue to work towards our £100,000 target.

Are you ready for a challenge?