You probably haven’t heard his name anytime recently, but Eddie Izzard just did something pretty amazing.
The 54-year-old English stand-up comedian just finished running 27 marathons in 27 days in South Africa. That’s 1,134km, or roughly twice the distance from Toronto to Montreal–on foot. To make things even crazier, Izzard had to run a double marathon on the last day, because he was forced to take an unscheduled rest on the fifth day of the challenge.
The comedian accomplished this incredible athletic feat to raise money for Sport Relief, a UK-based charity that funds a variety of programs; from supporting patients living with mental health conditions, to giving children access to life-saving vaccines. Izzard had already attempted to complete a similar goal back in 2012, but had to pull out for health reasons.
The 27 marathons were meant to represent the 27 years that Nelson Mandela spent in prison before becoming the first black president of South Africa. In fact, Izzard finished his marathon beneath a statue of Mandela in Pretoria.
“It’s been the hardest thing I’ve ever done and I’m very tired,” he told the BBC. “Thank you to everyone who has donated. This was tough so don’t do this at home.”
The route saw Izzard battle dehydraton, heat exhaustion and sun stroke, but his efforts netted him £1.35M ($2.5M CAD) in donations. And, as you can probably imagine, he celebrated by taking a giant swig from a champagne bottle.
Cheers to that.