Running up Everest for schoolboy Edward

NRHNBE120508d5, Gavin Chamberlain training in shipley park for his marathon at mt everest.
NRHNBE120508d5, Gavin Chamberlain training in shipley park for his marathon at mt everest.

Anyone who has ever attempted to run the London Marathon will tell you it is no easy feat.

But to Ripley action man Gavin Chamberlain a 26-mile course through the capital would feel like a stroll in the park.

NRHNBE120508d4, Gavin Chamberlain training in shipley park for his marathon at mt everest.

NRHNBE120508d4, Gavin Chamberlain training in shipley park for his marathon at mt everest.

The 35-year-old engineer at Umeco Composites in Heanor is currently in training for the toughest, highest marathon in the world to raise money for the Edward Bright Meningitis Research Foundation.

The Tenzing Hilary Everest Marathon sees more than 100 competitors race from the foot of Mount Everest to the Sherpa capital of Nepal, Namche Bazaar, each June.

Starting from an eye watering 5,000 metres above sea-level, and descending throughout the race, the yearly event, timed to coincide with the anniversary of Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay’s first ascent of the world’s tallest mountain in 1953, is as tough as it gets.

But it can be tough training for an altitude marathon around Derbyshire.

NRHNBE120508d3, Gavin Chamberlain training in shipley park for his marathon at mt everest.

NRHNBE120508d3, Gavin Chamberlain training in shipley park for his marathon at mt everest.

The Ripley dad-of-one, of Norman Road, said: “There’s no way you can train for altitude sickness really.

The highest mountain we’ve got is Ben Nevis and that is a pimple compared to the mountain we are going to be on!”

But is Gavin hiding the nerves before his Nepalese adventure?

He said: “I’m just really looking forward to it. I am fitter now than I have ever been in my life.”

Gavin has been doing a lot of training at the Brecon Beacons in Wales, but during the week he settles for a trail through Ambergate Woods.

Currently he has raised around £500 for the Edward Bright charity.

Ripley 12-year-old Edward lost his arms and legs to meningitis in 2007 and Gary is hoping the money will help towards expensive new prosthetic limbs for the brave youngster.

Gary said: “It’s a local charity and I know his family.

“I really want to get the Edward Bright charity back into the public eye.”

In order to just reach the starting line, Gavin will need to take a ten-day trek from Namche Bazaar to the foot of the world’s highest mountain.

The lengthy hike before the race gives the competitors a chance to acclimatize to the extreme altitudes.

It also gives the intrepid racers a chance to study the route they will be taking on the way back down.However, the return journey from the foot of Everest to the Nepalese Sherpa capital is set to take six hours, for the best competitors - around four hours more than the time top athletes take to complete a regular marathon.

Last year 130 competitors from all over the world took part.

To donate to Gavin’s appeal for Edward Bright, head to his Facebook page Mount Everest Marathon 2012.