A DOCTOR who once ran 18 marathons in as many days has set himself a fresh challenge – to climb Scotland’s ten highest mountains in just 24 hours.
Dr Andrew Murray, from Southside, will tackle the peaks with his friend, 29-year-old personal trainer and former marine Donnie Campbell.
The pair will each munch their way through a massive 5000 calories, double the recommended daily intake for a man – feasting on several meals while snacking regularly on bananas, flapjack and energy bars.
Dr Murray and Mr Campbell, who have been friends for five years, will launch their energy-sapping bid to beat the “Big Ten” next Saturday by running up and down the 1214m-high Ben Lawers.
They will then take on the Nevis range, before battling the final five in the Cairngorms.
For Dr Murray, 33, the one-day lung-busting challenge is just the latest in a series of gruelling conquests – including running more than 2500 miles from Scotland to the Sahara and pounding a path up Mount Kilimanjaro, a feat which took the GP seven hours.
He’s keen to bounce back to top form after his most recent adventure ended in disappointment. Dr Murray was forced to admit defeat in his “greatest challenge” last month after illness robbed him of his chance to run 100 miles from the Andes to the Amazon Basin in a day.
With 300m of Mount Cotopaxi in Ecuador to climb, a stomach bug – as well as zero visibility – left him with no choice but to turn back.
He insisted that memory wouldn’t put him off next week’s mission, which will be filmed by a BBC TV crew.
Dr Murray said: “I think it will be fantastic. Donnie and I have been training in the Pentland Hills and Arthur’s Seat – but these are much bigger so it will take us out of our comfort zone. It’s just a case of putting one foot in front of the other.”
The pair hope to raise cash for the Scottish Association for Mental Health.
Mr Campbell, from Leith, said he was confident the pair would celebrate their success with a “few beers”.