Pat Farmer, with wife Tania and his support crew, celebrate finishing the epic Spirit of India Run on March 29. Image – Supplied.
By Kate Dzienis
Sydney resident and ultra runner Pat Farmer last week (March 29) completed his epic 4,416kms run through India, starting from the southern most tip in Kanyakumari on January 26 (2016) and finishing in Srinagar, along the banks of the northern Jhelum River near the Himalayas.
Farmer, 54, ran the equivalent of two marathon distances a day, averaging about 80kms on a daily basis, and always had a legion of followers running and cheering alongside him.
The aim of the Spirit of India Run was to raise awareness and funds for girls education through the Nanhi Kali Foundation, and along the way not only met with varying government officials, but also with every day families to talk about the importance of getting young ladies into school and ensuring they were given the same opportunities as boys.
The run was not just about momentous occasions though – he was taken to hospital following a collapse from heat exhaustion and dehydration only two days into the run.
Farmer also lost a whopping 13kg in his first week, but was back at a healthy weight when he crossed the finish line.
“The Spirit of India Run is my way of making a difference, and I feel elated to have finished,” he said.
“We can leave all the work to our politicians and diplomats, or we can go on and do the job ourselves.”
Farmer said the event included strengthening the relationship between Australia and India and inspiring people to make their own changes in the world.
He has certainly done that, with thousands upon thousands of people in India and Australia following his every move on social media and on the television screens.
On March 31, Farmer, along with his wife Tania, got the opportunity to meet with India’s President Pranab Mukherjee.
To donate to the cause visit patfarmer.com.