Marathon effort to mark milestone birthday

Most people might plan a party for a life milestone such as turning 60. Not Adrian Bol.

The teacher is planning to run seven marathons, on seven consecutive days, on seven beaches, in seven states and territories – and it’s all to raise funds for Foodbank Victoria.

For months now Adrian has been getting up as early as 3.30am to train on his local beach, Bonbeach in Melbourne’s south-east, before arriving at his school to teach.

“The training regime is horrendous,” he said. But the teacher of 40 years is keen to give back to the community and mark his birthday in a meaningful way.

“I’ve had a blessed career and I want to give back. There’s a lot of families in need, a lot of people are really doing it tough and if it wasn’t for Foodbank they’d be doing it a lot tougher.”

Adrian hasn’t run a traditional marathon before but he is banking on his years as a runner – and an extreme preparation regime – to get him over the line.

“I’m a runner. I love to run. I can run on the surface of the beach because I’ve been doing it for over 30 years – it’s my temple of tranquillity. The recovery is what I’m really, really focusing on. The recovery is the key to getting up and going the next day, and the next day, and the next.”

Each marathon is expected to take between six and seven hours. And then there’s the plane trips. Over the course of the week, he’ll spend between 40 and 50 hours running and 18 hours flying.

The first marathon will be run on Darwin’s Casuarina Beach on June 6 – his 60th birthday. He then flies to Perth (Scarborough Beach, June 7); Adelaide (Glenelg Beach, June 8); Gold Coast (Kirra Beach, June 9); Sydney (Cronulla Beach, June 10); Hobart (Seven Mile Beach, June 11); and Melbourne (Bonbeach, June 12).

“I don’t think it’s ever been done before,” Adrian said of the beach challenge.

The seed was planted a few years ago by the feats of Kiwi airline pilot, Mike Allsop, who completed seven marathons in seven days on seven continents.

“I read his book. He wasn’t even a runner and he achieved something unbelievable, I thought that was awesome,” said Adrian, who has been in contact and received tips from Allsop. He also now shares a sponsor with the famous Kiwi, USANA Health Sciences.

“I feel like I’m back in my twenties and from a fitness point of view I haven’t been any fitter than this,” Adrian said.

“My main aim is to make a big difference and raise important funds for Foodbank Victoria, but I also want to inspire people young and old – and prove that even at the ripe old age of 60 people can do whatever they set their mind to.”

People can donate to Adrian’s fundraiser on his fundraising page.


Kimberley Nichols, Foodbank Victoria: 03 9362 8309 / 0466 514 084
Alexa Viani, Foodbank Victoria: 03 9362 8333  / 0466 459 266