Another level of crazy for ‘gym guy’ Innes

Robert Cruickshanks (left) trustee Martyn's Monday Club discusses the run from Oban to Fort William and back to oban with runner Innes Hughes. Photograph: Kevin McGlynn.

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Having completed half the distance in 12 hours last year, ‘gym guy’ Innes Hughes, is now challenging himself to run from Oban to Fort William and back in 24 hours in aid of mental health support charity Martyn’s Monday Club.

Innes Hughes. Photograph: Kevin McGlynn.

The run will begin at 5pm on December 29 in Station Square when the 23-year-old personal trainer will head for Connel before joining the cycle path route to Fort William. Having only trained for his challenge for four weeks, Innes will also complete a loop around Creagan Loch on the way there and back to reach his 100-mile target. He will be joined by client Garry Mcivor for the first 30 miles or so.

‘I thought I’d set the challenge of doing it both ways because I remember thinking how crazy it was after completing it going one way, so to complete it both ways in one go would just be another level of crazy,’ said Innes.

‘It’s an almost ridiculous challenge that most people would think isn’t possible in the time frame given and I want to prove it is possible.’

Challenges are what Innes thrives on. As a pupil at Oban High School he admits that fitness didn’t really figure in his life until he reached fifth year. Then, with some help from science technician David Ferguson, the youngster went through a physical and mental transformation that he has never looked back from.

‘It was during the 6am workouts before school with Davie that my mentality began to change from someone who would always give up as soon as it got hard to someone who liked to challenge themselves,’ he told The Oban Times.

‘Over the years that inner challenge has just gotten bigger and bigger, and I believe if it wasn’t for Davie, I don’t know if I would be where I am today.’

‘I believe we should always be challenging ourselves, whether it be mentally or physically. I believe we should always be striving for that next level.

‘One of my favourite quotes is “be uncommon amongst uncommon people” from ex-navy seal David Goggins. It’s all about becoming the very best you can as human being and being able to do things others cannot. For me, physically challenging myself and pushing myself to the absolute limit is the best way to build mental strength and character among other attributes.’

Innes’s focus on mental strength is one of the reasons behind him choosing Martyn’s Monday Club to be the recipient of his fundraising efforts.

‘I chose Martyn’s as I’ve had my own past issues and although I’m not one to sit in a room and talk about it all the time, I know that there’s a lot of people out there that really benefit and rely on groups like this to listen to them in their time of need.

‘Having gone along, I have seen first hand that there is much need for Martyn’s Monday Club to continue to be available for both men and women who need it. I’ve seen just how much it has helped people. I have known what it’s like to be in bad place, I know what it’s like to know you have someone there to help you get through it and so having such a close connection to the club I felt it was the clear choice.’

To donate towards Innes’ challenge visit his 100 miles? Just Giving page,