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Seven Marathons, Seven Continents, Seven Days

David Gething

The World Marathon Challenge—seven marathons on seven continents in seven days—is the ultimate race for adventurous runners. It tests the athletes to their limits, going from biting cold Antarctic conditions one day to dry desert heat another. To survive the onslaught of sensations—fear, fatigue, depression, elation—takes a special sort of determination and strength of will. Few would voluntarily take on such a challenge, and fewer still would finish it.

Relentless: Seven Marathons, Seven Continents, Seven Days is David Gething’s amazing story of his journey from a middle-aged couch potato to a World Marathon champion. Gething gives a deeply personal and candid view of what it is like to compete in one of the most demanding amateur sporting events on the planet, including the sacrifices made just to get to the start of the race and what it takes to win. He describes in detail each individual contest—originating in Antarctica and ending in Australia a week later—and the physical, emotional, and psychological sides of this grueling, multi-day stage race. Far from just depicting the event itself, Gething also delves into the interpersonal relationships, rivalries, and bonds that form on this adventure that is like no other.

Featuring photographs taken during the event from Gething’s personal collection, and including private emails to and from the author and his family and friends,
Relentless gives a truly unique and intimate view into the inner workings of this punishing ultra-endurance battle. Marathon runners, sporting enthusiasts, and anyone with a dream and a determination to succeed despite the odds will find Gething’s journey a fascinating and inspiring story.
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Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Pages: 230Size: 6 1/4 x 9 3/8
978-1-4422-6052-8 • Hardback • October 2016 • $35.00 • (£23.95)
978-1-4422-6053-5 • eBook • October 2016 • $33.00 • (£22.95)
David Gething won the World Marathon Challenge in January 2015, running seven marathons on seven continents in seven days, and setting two new world records in the process. Specialising in long-distance events, he has competed in numerous marathons including the famed Boston Marathon, Ironman triathlons, Ultraman Florida, Norseman and Celtman Extreme Triathlons, and multi-day European bicycle stage-races. He is a regular contributor to local magazines and publications, including the South China Morning Post, Hong Kong’s leading English-language newspaper. When not training and racing, Dr. Gething is a veterinarian in Hong Kong.
INTRODUCTION: The Story of the Beginning

Chapter 2: MARATHON 1: ANTARCTICA: Union Glacier: A Trial byFire in the Coldest Place on Earth
Chapter 3: MARATHON 2: SOUTH AMERICA: Punta Arenas, Chile: The Shakedown
Chapter 4: MARATHON 3: NORTH AMERICA: Miami, United States of America: The Forging of the Alliance
Chapter 5: MARATHON 4: EUROPE: Madrid, Spain: The Painful Test
Chapter 6: MARATHON 5: AFRICA: Marrakech, Morocco: The Unraveling
Chapter 7: MARATHON 6: ASIA: Dubai, United Arab Emirates: When to Win Alone Would Have Been a Loss
Chapter 8: MARATHON 7: OCEANIA: Sydney, Australia: The Final Showdown

APPENDIX: The Final Standings
In 2007, the author’s pregnant wife pointed out that he was getting a little soft: too much bad food, not enough exercise, perhaps not quite the right role model for their soon-to-be-born child. Gething took her observation to heart and vowed to get into shape. He started running, eventually graduating to marathons, and, in 2015, he entered and won the very first World Marathon Challenge, which is just as hard as it sounds: seven full marathons in the space of a week in Antarctica, South America, North America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia. It sounds like an incredible ordeal, the kind of thing you wonder why anyone would subject himself to, and indeed that’s a big part of this memoir: the author explaining how and why he went, in the space of less than a decade, from an ordinary, out-of-shape guy to a world-class marathon runner. Full of interesting and surprising stories—it really was quite a journey, and it’s populated by an engaging cast of real-life characters—the book should appeal to runners of all kinds, from newbies to veterans.

The ambition and dedication that David Gething demonstrates in his remarkable achievement shows that he has the true spirit of an IRONMAN: Anything is Possible with the right amount of dedication and commitment.
Andrew Messick, CEO of Ironman

A wonderfully told adventure about pushing your limits—for runners and non-runners alike. I couldn't put it down.
John Ellis, Ultra Runner

David Gething has done an excellent job of capturing the essence of the event—the characters, courses, logistics, the internal dialogues and doubts, the issues and ethics and, in the end, the sheer magnitude of it all. Yet, like Ultraman, despite its length and relatively small number of competitors, Gething draws the reader into the art and heart of what it means to be a champion. Gething translates the nuances of such a multi-day challenge into an exciting finale both on and off the pages of the book. I was totally impressed and engrossed. An excellent read—I would totally recommend the book.
Steve King, Ironman, Ultraman, and Ultramarathon legend

When David first approached me about racing the 7 marathons in 7 days on 7 continents challenge, I first wondered how it was even possible. But then I also realized that David is one of those special athletes with the physical strength to handle the punishment that would need to be endured—and even more importantly, the mental strength to stay focused and keep pushing right to the end no matter how much suffering he would have to endure.
Nigel Gray, elite professional triathlete and coach, NRG Performance Training