An evening of swimrun adventures with Alex Staniforth

New film Head Above Water explores Alex Staniforth’s journey of identity and discovery while completing the Frog Graham, Britain’s ultimate swimrun challenge

A new film exploring Alex Staniforth’s journey of identity and discovery while completing the Frog Graham, Britain’s ultimate swimrun challenge, premiers in the Lake District on 23 February.

Navigating mental health issues, epilepsy, and bullying since school, along with surviving two major disasters on Mount Everest, Alex is no stranger to overcoming challenges.

An adventurer, author, and founder of mental health charity Mind Over Mountains, Alex is the fastest ever to climb all 100 UK county tops by human power. In 2020, Alex ran the National Three Peaks Challenge, covering 452 miles in 9 days and 12 hours.

2022 saw Alex face a different kind of challenge – Long Covid. While unable to pursue his goals as an athlete, he discovered the healing power of open water swimming in the Lake District. This formed an ambitious attempt at a comeback challenge, the Frog Graham Round. The UK’s ultimate swimrun challenge, competitors run roughly 40 miles, ascend over 15,000 ft, and swim two miles across four lakes.

His journey of completing the challenge has been documented in a new film, Head Above Water, which premiers in Ambleside in the Lake District on 23 February before moving on to Bristol, London and Manchester.

After each screening, Alex and Garth (director) will discuss making the film and the Frog Graham challenge, plus there will be a Q&A session.

Head Above Water screenings

23 Feb – Premiere at The Force Café, Ambleside, 6.30pm

12 March – Ellis Brigham Mountain Sports, Bristol, 7pm

13 March – Ellis Brigham Mountain Sports, Covent Garden, London 7.30pm

14 March – Ellis Brigham Mountain Sports , Manchester, 6.30pm

Tickets are £5; all proceeds going to Mind Over Mountains. Purchase your tickets here.

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Abi writes swimming news stories and features for the Outdoor Swimmer website and manages the social media channels. She loves to swim, run, hike and SUP close to her home in Herefordshire. While she’s a keen wild swimmer, Abi is new to the world of open water events and recently completed her first open water mile. She has previously written for The Guardian, BBC Countryfile Magazine, BBC History Magazine and Ernest Journal.