John Cena mad fan is fastest bloke to run marathon dressed as WWE star

A bloke who holds the world record for running the fastest marathon dressed as John Cena is getting ready to set a new global best.

Matthew Akpan, from Leeds, West Yorkshire, is the holder of Guinness World Records for both the fastest marathon and fastest half marathon dressed as the iconic WWE star.

In October 2021 ,he belted out the 26 miles and 385-yard run during the York Marathon, setting a time of two hours and 56 minutes.

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Then, for a new challenge, he turned his attention to the half in May 2022, smashing out the run in an impressive one hour, 24 minutes and 26 seconds in Leeds.

Matthew, who has Aspergers, was the first person to attempt the remarkable wrestling-themed challenge.

He was diagnosed with the developmental syndrome in 2013, the same year his father passed away, and ran the 2021 race in tribute.

Speaking to the Daily Star about the touching reason he took on the challenge, he said: “I ran as John Cena because he is one of my favourite wrestlers but also my father was a big wrestling fan and we would watch wrestling together we did this for over 20 years.

“He passed away from kidney failure in January 2021 and as a tribute to him I decided I wanted to see if I could run a marathon dressed as Cena and attempt a Guinness world record – which has now become an annual tradition”.

The Manchester Metropolitan University graduate told The Star he wanted to show people what was “possible even with a disability”.

Matthew, who was a volunteer at the commonwealth games in 2022, said he also chose to run the races dressed as his hero Cena because of all the work he’s done for charity.

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Following his completion of the race, Cena himself posted a tweet praising Matthew’s efforts.

He wrote in October 2022: “A fun record worth celebrating for its substance and message (and maybe its style).

“Thanks to @GWR for recognizing a young man who is running for a cause and with purpose. #NGU”.

Replying to Cena, Matthew wrote: “I want to thank John Cena for his very kind words, and

@GWR for the opportunity to run as him in his attire. My Dad and me would watch wrestling and enjoy all the time.

“It is great to know that @JohnCena acknowledges. If anyone can take anything from this”.

Discussing how he got into running, and why he’s carried on doing it for so long, Matthew said: “I started [running] at an early age, 13, and around 19 I started to train six days a week.

“I found that I had a natural appetite for the longer distances and the times I was producing – I ran my first marathon in two hours 41 minutes in Manchester and never looked back.

“I love the distance and how it challenges you mentally and physically – and being a runner is great exercise.”

Now he’s going for his third world record.

Matthew told the Star: “My next challenge is the Rob Burrow Marathon on May 14th I am combining it by going for my third world record where I have to get the most amount of theme tunes for WWE wrestlers in one minute,” which he said “works out to one theme tune every three seconds”.

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