Nothing is too tough for charity champion James

SPLASHING TIME Student James Anderson.  Picture: Malcolm Wells (113928-5147)
SPLASHING TIME Student James Anderson. Picture: Malcolm Wells (113928-5147)
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FOR one Portsmouth student no challenge is too mentally tough or physically gruelling.

And just to prove it James Anderson, 21, decided to run 40km, carrying 40lb, submerged in 40cm of water – for what he calls the 40-40-40 challenge.

But the long-distance charity run, carried out over seven hours along Southsea and Eastney beaches, is not the first crazy test of endurance James has set himself.

The idea for his latest challenge came during the summer while he was running from Canterbury all the way to Rome in Italy.

He said: ‘I heard about it in Switzerland. I met a man after my own heart who liked to hunt in -15C.

‘He said it was how the Israeli military train and, although I don’t know if that’s true, I thought it sounded like a good idea.’

James arrived home from his Rome run and rested for three weeks before beginning his training. This time he was intent on raising as much as he could for Water Aid, a charity which tries to make sure the world’s poorest people have access to clean water.

‘I didn’t have to do too much training,’ he said.

‘I already had a lot of running experience from my run in the summer.

‘When I was younger I did a lot of fighting, such as martial arts and mixed martial arts.

‘I started rock climbing when I was 16 and went to Indonesia.

‘It was there I had my first glimpse of poverty.

‘And as much as I like the adrenaline rush from these challenges, it’s also a way to try and help other people out.’

James’s run to Rome – in which he ran for an incredible 58 days covering around 26 miles a day – was for the British Lung Foundation.

The first year international development studies student at the University of Portsmouth said: ‘The run went well, except my shoes split half-way through, which meant I had to walk some of the distance. It was very painful.

‘My mum worries a lot about these challenges and a lot of people don’t understand why I do it.

‘But I just want to raise money for charity and it’s all for a good cause.’

From both events James has so far managed to raise £1,500; to donate visit