Shepherd’s 31-hour run for Movember

Made it. . . Waikaia man Tom Anderson relaxes with his parents Denise and James after he ran from Waikaia to Wanaka to raise money for Movember. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

What would you do if you have just run 160km with little sleep, your body is screaming at you and you are sitting at the bottom of the Crown Range with another 52km to go?

Burst into tears? Call a friend?

Waikaia’s Tom Anderson did both.

At the weekend the 25-year-old completed a run from Waikaia to Wanaka in 31 hours, stopping only for four 10-minute power naps.

The distance was the equivalent of five marathons. So far he has raised about $51,000 for Movember, the charity which promotes men’s health awareness.

Mr Anderson said when he reached the bottom of the Crown Range his ankles were swollen and he could not feel his legs.

‘‘Mentally I was done. I was at rock bottom. I picked up the phone and called a mate, Ben O’Carroll, and burst into tears.’’

There were plenty of people about but he was proud that he did not hide how he was feeling, he said.

‘‘If that call can be made, it can change everything. No-one needs to struggle alone.’’

Mr O’Carroll encouraged him that everyone believed he would make it, and so he started running again.

Mr Anderson arrived in Wanaka at 7.30pm on Saturday.

At the start of the year he set a goal to run the distance and raise money for a charity but by October had not made much progress in making a plan.

In his work as Argyle Station head shepherd he was quite fit but also ran several times a week.

On October 28 he took the plunge and put up a social networking page letting people know. At the start of November he decided to test himself by running 100km.

Unfortunately he injured his Achilles tendon on the run, which did not heal before he set off on Friday.

‘‘If you can put up with the pain and you’re doing it for a cause just bite the bullet and go for it.

‘‘It was bearable, like I could run on it — that’s what I told myself.’’

He received great support and had friends running with him all the way. ‘

‘It was definitely what got me there. It’s impossible to do anything like that on your own.’’

In hindsight, his training was inadequate for the task, especially as he had not run much on tar seal before, Mr Anderson said.

Although he was ‘‘blown away’’ by the money he raised he would not be attempting the feat again.

‘‘It’s a once in a lifetime thing.’’