Cork teen commended for ambitious challenge which saw her walk more than 200km in 7 days 

Cork teen commended for ambitious challenge which saw her walk more than 200km in 7 days 

Fenella Riordan walked a total of 206km last week as part of a challenge with The Sanctuary Runners.

A Cork teen, who took on a week-long walking challenge with the support of Cork Sanctuary Runners, has completed more than 200km in seven days. 

Members of the Sanctuary Runners across Ireland took on a virtual challenge to complete as many kilometres as they could by either walking or running last week.

However, 17-year-old Fenella Riordan decided to set her own individual challenge as the Cork and Kerry groups combined to accumulate as many kilometres as possible.

Fenella, who has been a part of the Cork Sanctuary Runners since late 2018, managed to clock up more kilometres than anyone else in the country who took part.

Keeping within her 5km radius, the teen completed an average of 25-30km a day and on Sunday she faced her very own marathon, walking a total of 42kms.

When I came home after the nearly seven hours out walking, we weighed my coat and it weighed five pounds because of all the rain.

“I finished the week on 206km which was great but honestly, the only reason I did it was because of the motivation of the group,” she added.

Fenella's achievement helped ensure victory for the Cork/Kerry group in the challenge, but she said it was a real team effort. 

“There were people doing 20/30km runs even, so everyone put in such great effort and thankfully, the Cork and Kerry group did win the challenge so that was a great addition,” she said.

Despite not being able to come together during restrictions, members of the Sanctuary Runners continued to motivate one another throughout the week.

As a whole, groups across the country completed a total of over 81,000 kilometres over the course of the week which marked the third anniversary of the Sanctuary Runners.

Founder of The Sanctuary Runners, Graham Clifford commended Fenella’s ambitious challenge which proved to be a real motivator for other members.

“It’s fantastic to see somebody so young to be so aware of the need for solidarity, friendship and respect and motivating themselves enough to really go at something like this to make a statement.”

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