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It can be hard to find fun and healthy ways to spend your weekend but people on TikTok have discovered one way to spend a Saturday that will test your fitness, allow you to spend time with friends and explore the city you live in.

The idea of running a marathon hardly appeals to me. In fact, I wouldn’t call myself someone who enjoys running at all, apart from the odd 5K or sprints as part of a workout. A long walk, on the other hand, has become part of my daily routine since lockdown and I have been known to rack up a step count as high as 30,000 at the weekend.

That’s why when I stumbled across a TikTok of three women walking a marathon in one day, I was instantly intrigued. My first thought was: Just how possible is this for the average walker? I might be a keen stroller but given that I’ve never got anywhere close to marathon distance – walking or running – surely setting out to cover 26 miles was out of the question?

But it turns out that walking a marathon needn’t be the huge slog it might sound. And, as the TikTok proves, it’s actually a brilliant way to explore your local area, taking in landmarks including Primrose Hill, Camden Market, Tower Bridge and Buckingham Palace.

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With summer approaching, walking around the city is one of the best ways to explore London. Spending a day walking a marathon around the city is not only a huge achievement but an affordable, healthy and unusual way to spend a Saturday (although make sure not to attempt this one on a hangover).

The TikTok breaks the route down mile by mile, starting and ending in west London. But you could design your own route using an app like Strava so you can visit all your favourite parts of your city. Make sure to plot in some food and drink stops along the way – you’ll need lots of energy in the form of delicious food to keep you going during a fitness challenge like this one.

Walking the 26.2 miles on average takes between six and nine hours, so you want to make sure that you’re able to spend that length of time on your feet. Give yourself at least a couple of weeks to get used to walking around for hours at a time, starting with shorter walks and aiming to walk for up to four or five hours in one go ahead of your big marathon walk.

And while you might think a pair of converse will do the job for a day-long walk, appropriate footwear is key to ensure you avoid injury, so do invest in a pair of walking shoes. It’s also a good idea to leave the day after your big walk free as you’ll almost definitely experience DOMS – so a day with your feet up on the couch might be a good idea.

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Join the Stylist team for a scenic hike on the Strong Women Trek in partnership with Yakult

Not quite ready to walk a full marathon but looking for a challenge? You’re in luck! The Strong Women Trek is 13 miles long and is suitable for all fitness levels – the perfect warm-up for a walking marathon.

Images: Getty

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