A CHARITY worker who ran 95 miles in seven days said French pastries kept his feet moving during the Paris Marathon.

James Byfield, a marketing, communications and fundraising assistant at Lepra, took on the races including the Colchester Half Marathon and the Paris race sporting a charity vest.

James has raised more than £670 so far with the money being donated to help diagnose and cure people with leprosy worldwide.


James at the Colchester Half Marathon

He said: “For the half marathon, I aimed to beat two hours and 30 minutes.

"I finished the race with a time of two hours, 29 minutes and 56 seconds.

“In Paris I just wanted to get to the finish line and I accomplished this in a time of around six hours and 46 seconds.

“The first 13 miles went really well, the route was very scenic.

“During the last 13 miles fatigue started setting in and my pace dropped drastically. Thoughts of eating in various patisseries kept me going and helped to cross the finish line.”

To coincide with Lepra’s 95th anniversary, James, from Colchester, racked up the same amount of miles, running for nearly 22 hours.

Despite being drained, he still has the Ottawa Lumberjack Challenge to complete next month which is four races - a 2k, 5k and 10k before a full marathon the next day.


James running towards Colchester town centre

“Then a week later I’ll be running the Stockholm Marathon,” the 23-year-old said.

“I’m feeling confident for the Ottawa races as I still have time to do some extra training.

“But I’m less confident about Stockholm as my legs might not have recovered from all the running by then.

“I’m definitely exhausted, but I know it’s only about a month of running left before I can return to being a couch potato during the summer. So there’s light at the end of the tunnel.”

James said he was running for children affected by leprosy.

He added: “I believe every child should have an equal chance at life.

"Leprosy is an easily curable disease that if left untreated, can cause life-changing disabilities.”

To sponsor James, click here