Sport

Swapping PPE For 'The Rhino': One Army Reservist's 100 Marathon Challenge

Major Brett Bader is raising money for Epilepsy Research UK and Save The Rhino International with his marathon challenge.

An Army reservist is running 100 full and half marathons to raise money for charity.

Major Brett Bader works in pre-hospital medical training as his civilian job, meaning his days are spent wearing personal protective equipment (PPE).

However, during his time off, he is working through the charity challenge which includes running in a rhino costume to raise funds for Save The Rhino International.

"Some people know that I’ve run a few places in the rhino [suit] from Edinburgh to the Atacama Desert out in Chile which is seven marathons back-to-back at altitude," he said.

"As a consequence, I said 'I’m going to chuck the rhino costume on and you’ll probably sponsor me more if I make my life a little bit harder'!"

Maj Bader is also fundraising for Epilepsy Research UK, he said: "My daughter developed epilepsy two-and-a-half years ago going through puberty.

"As a consequence, we’ve been living with a life interrupted where she is having seizures and just trying to manage it.

"For me, Epilepsy Research UK is a dedicated charity that does research, is developing innovative ways [of] funding researchers and championing health policies to make sure that we can try and identify ways to find a cure and support people with their life."

Major Brett Bader (right) spoke to our reporter Cath Brazier (left) at the scenic New Forest in Hampshire.

The reservist, who also plays Army lacrosse and rugby, started the challenge before the first lockdown and has competed in virtual marathons across the world. 

He said: "I’ve had a real opportunity to go around the world without actually leaving home!

"[I’ve done] New York, the Comrades Marathon in South Africa, Tallinn, out to Canada, doing Toronto and Ottawa. We’re off to Miami next!

"It’s been absolutely fantastic and that would have taken years just to even get to some of those places and, hopefully, being able to afford to run those.

"I’ve been paying for all the race entries myself and just giving as much attention in getting the publicity off the social media and promoting that."