‘Run to the Source’ Film Premiere: Black Trail Runner Tackles River Thames FKT

This new film from Patagonia documents the many challenges one man faces as an athlete, a person of color, and a member of the human race.

In the film, Brit ultrarunner Martin Johnson set out to attempt a new speed record on the 184-mile-long Thames Path. To do that, he’d have to run the distance in under 40 hours. A challenge, certainly, but not the only one Johnson has faced in his running career.

“In my early days, I would be the only Black runner on the start line,” Johnson said. “Not having anyone else on the trail that looks like you can be an uncomfortable experience.”

Over the course of many miles, Johnson meditates on the inextricable tie between Britain’s Black history, the River Thames, and racial movements today.

“These issues we’re talking about … are there for all to tackle — Black, brown, white. It’s only by doing that you can create a more positive, inclusive future across society as a whole,” he said.

Follow along with his journey in “Run to the Source” and learn more about Johnson’s efforts to promote diversity within running at Patagonia.

Runtime: 68 minutes

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Jilli Cluff

Jilli grew up in the rural southern Colorado mountains, later moving to Texas for college. After seven years in corporate consulting, she was introduced to sport climbing — and life would never be the same. She now works as a contributor, gear tester, and editor for GearJunkie and other outlets within the AllGear family. She is based out of Atlanta, Georgia where she takes up residence with her climbing gear and one-eared blue heeler, George Michael.


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