Celebrating 25 Years of Scoop
Special: Up To 25% Off Scoop Pro Learn More

News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search


Long Distance Runner Jon Nabbs Just Finished 35-day Run From Bluff To Cape Reinga Benefitting Child Cancer Foundation

Jon Nabbs is epic. After finishing an all-weather, cross-Canada run benefitting childhood cancer charities, the Kiwi was soon back in his home country in his superhero suit, lacing back up in Bluff and ready to run from Bluff to Cape Reinga to benefit Child Cancer Foundation and take a crack at a Guiness World Record, too.

The existing world record for running the length of New Zealand is 52 days. On Monday afternoon, Jon did it in 35 days, 8 hours, 38 minutes and 1 second. The paperwork will take a few months before it’s declared official.

Jon Nabbs (Photo/Supplied)

To date, his run has raised an incredible $47,000 dollars and counting for Child Cancer Foundation. Donations are still being accepted https://childcancer-fundraising.org.nz/jonathan-nabbs until 28 June.

Behind his ambition was the call to turn the recent loss of both his parents to cancer into an inspiring adventure that gives back to kids facing the same disease.

While running through Auckland, Jon paid a visit to Starship Hospital to see some of the children receiving treatment in the cancer ward, much to their delight and his.

“It was really special. Some of the kids had been following online and were really excited for the visit. One even wore her own superhero costume for the day’s treatments in Starship. To raise spirits like that, and also to see where the funds raised all go, was really impactful” Jon said of his Starship visit.

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading

Are you getting our free newsletter?

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.

Monica Briggs, Child Cancer Foundation CEO, has felt inspired tracking the 35-day run. “We are so appreciative of the fundraisers in our community, and a story like Jon’s -- where he’s lost both parents to cancer and it's fueled him to want to give back in a meaningful way – has been inspiring to all of us at Child Cancer Foundation. Our mahi would not be possible without the generosity and spirit of fundraisers like Jon. What a huge accomplishment!”

Morning tea at Child Cancer Foundation’s nearby Family Place followed Jon’s Starship visit, where grateful staff gifted him with a Beads of Courage® carer necklace including glass beads to represent his runs across Canada and Aotearoa, and a pounamu bead gifted and blessed by Ngāi Tahu in memory of his late parents. From there he kept running north.

What was it like to finally reach Cape Reinga and see the lighthouse just a few more strides away at the end of his journey? Jon described it as “Surreal, and exciting. It’s a special place, Te Rerenga Wairua / Cape Reinga. On top of that, the roads were quiet, the weather was good. I was so happy and excited. It was a beautiful moment.”

For others who may wish to follow in his footsteps and take on a similar challenge, Jon has some fantastic advice. “First, get clarity on your reason for doing it, to sustain you when it gets hard. Next, get the miles in in preparation. Finally, close your eyes and book the airplane ticket to the start point. The biggest obstacle to something like this is just the courage to begin. I think 90% of people who start something like this will finish, but only 5% of people who think about it will start.”

© Scoop Media

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland

Join Our Free Newsletter

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.