A Blackburn man is planning to run a marathon while fasting for Ramadan, meaning he will have to complete it without any water or energy gels.

Raja Aslam, 35, is set to take part in the Manchester Marathon on Sunday, April 16.

He hopes to run the entire 26.2 mile race without a drop of water or an energy gel as he is fasting for Ramadan, an Islamic holiday where people fast from sunrise until sunset.

Raja, who has already completed five marathons, said: “This year I wasn’t planning on running a marathon but I won a competition, which included sportswear and a marathon entry.

Lancashire Telegraph: Raja AslamRaja Aslam (Image: Raja Aslam)

“I will be fasting which means no food and drink from sunrise until sunset. It means I will be running the marathon without any gels, water or electrolytes.

“I am hoping loved ones will come out to support me and motivate me to get around the course.”

Raja said he is taking on the challenge to test his limits and has already been practicing running long distances without food or water.

He said: “I have taken part in five marathons before but this is the one I am most looking forward to.

“It’s more about self-belief and overcoming a challenge. I want to prove that I am physically and mentally capable of doing things that aren’t ‘normal’.”

Raja is also taking on the challenge for a great cause and is hoping to raise thousands for Abu Faisal Trust, a charity that is fundraising for the earthquake victims in Turkey and Syria.

He said: “The things we complain about in everyday life are nothing compared to what they are going through in Turkey.

“People out there are suffering in such a terrible way. This is only going to be a couple of hours of struggle and I will have to find a way to pull myself through it.”

Lancashire Telegraph: Raja AslamRaja Aslam (Image: Raja Aslam)

Raja said he has raised money for the Abu Faisal Trust in the past.

He said: “This charity goes out of its way to support people abroad. With them I can see where it is being spent and that it is actually doing some good.

“The last money I raised for them went towards the creation of a school in Pakistan.”

On February 6 a powerful 7.8-magnitude earthquake toppled hundreds of buildings across wide swathes of Turkey and Syria.

It is thought that more than 44,000 people have been killed with tens of thousands more left homeless.

To donate to Raja’s fundraiser visit: www.justgiving.com