Dagenham ‘Ultra girl’ conquers Thames Path Challenge
PUBLISHED: 09:00 17 September 2015 | UPDATED: 09:26 17 September 2015
A runner dubbed “Ultra girl” for her love of epic endurance feats walked all day and night to complete the Thames Path Challenge.
Dagenham resident Charlotte Banks raised £400 for Help the Heroes by crossing the finishing line in Henley-on-Thames on Sunday and completing the 62-mile test in 29 hours.
“It got harder and harder, and after 15km my leg was in agony,” said the 25-year-old, whose new trainers caused excruciating blisters from the starting line at Putney Bridge.
Less than a quarter of the way through, the Dagenham 88 runner was forced to wait for nearly three hours to see a doctor, who then told her she should not continue the challenge.
“I had to finish it though. It didn’t matter I missed my target, I never thought in my life I could walk or run that distance,” said the Padnall Road resident, who defied her critics and overcame weight issues when she got hooked on running, more than 18 months ago.
“It was amazing finishing, the support from everyone cheering us on was overwhelming,” added Charlotte, who said she would not have got through the last 10k without husband Gary cheering her on.
Just days after completing the challenge, the full-time carer has already re-started her punishing regime of four runs a week – topped off with a weekly swim at Dagenham’s Becontree Leisure Centre.
“I got addicted – I really love it,” said Charlotte, who counts working, running and Nandos as her three great loves.
To help Charlotte raise more money for Help for Heroes, go to justgiving.com/Charlottesthamespath
If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Barking and Dagenham Post. Click the link in the orange box above for details.