617km non-stop run to be latest ‘crazy’ bid

Ultra-marathon runner Glenn Sutton, of Dunedin, who will take part in a 617km run from Milford...
Ultra-marathon runner Glenn Sutton, of Dunedin, who will take part in a 617km run from Milford Sound to Dunedin, trains on shared pathway in Dunedin yesterday. Photo: Linda Robertson
Dunedin man Glenn Sutton is used to running "crazy" distances but admits even he is scared by his latest challenge.

Mr Sutton is preparing to do a 617km non-stop run from Milford Sound to Dunedin this month.

The "Sounds to Town" run will be Mr Sutton’s longest yet and comes about three years after his 570km non-stop run from Milford Sound to Mt Cook.

"I’m just after a new adventure, a new challenge," Mr Sutton said.

"Doing these crazy runs, it takes a bit out of you, but now I’ve got enthusiasm to up the distance a wee bit."

The ultra-marathon was expected to take him 110 hours — about five days.

During his run, he would only have about three or four power naps to keep him going, he said.

"It’s a long way and it is scary as well.

"I’ll have to push pretty hard."

Starting on Tuesday, April 16, from Milford Sound, Mr Sutton expected to finish his run at Emerson’s on Saturday evening that week.

Mr Sutton said he was "shattered" when he finished his last 570km ultra-marathon.

"I actually fainted on the road 40km near the end, in the middle of the night.

"I just flaked out and had a snooze for about half an hour and then came back."

He hoped this time around he would be "a bit wiser and smarter".

"I’m more dialled in to what’s expected and what could happen," he said.

For his 570km ultra-marathon, Mr Sutton raised about $20,000 towards Otago Community Hospice.

This time, he planned to raise funds for the nationwide, rural wellbeing programme Farmstrong.

"I had a family friend who took his life about a year ago.

"Mental health in general is a pretty common topic these days.

"I’ve always found it’s a good thing to talk about, rather than bottling things up."

Emerson’s Brewery would be supporting his run by providing a campervan, fuel and printed T-shirts for his crew.

Mr Sutton has been running for about 20 years and said he never expected his hobby would grow to what it was today.

"I played competitive rugby til I was about 30, got fat for a couple of years, and then just gradually got into running.

"I did a half marathon and it just led on from there."

He enjoyed long runs and said "the longer the better", but his favourite part about it was involving other people.

"Not many people run from Milford Sound to Dunedin, so to be able to share that experience and get others involved is pretty cool."

Mr Sutton said his next venture was the Backyard Ultra World Satellite Championships in October, but otherwise he planned to be back at work the following Monday.

His team would be creating a Givealittle page before his run for people to make donations.

He also had a Facebook page "Glenn Sutton Athlete" posting updates.