An Orpington man who described himself as an "average guy with a drive" has become a world record holder after a gruelling triathlon.

Even Richard Branson has tweeted his congratulations to Chris Leek, 32, who completed the dangerous 289-mile Enduroman Arch2Arc without a wetsuit in the fastest time ever recorded.

He ran, swam and cycled from London’s Marble Arch to Paris’s Arc de Triomphe in an unprecedented 69 hours and 29 minutes.

The previous record was 73 hours and 39 minutes.

Despite the accolades and TV interviews, Chris, who accepted the challenge for three charities linked to his dad’s illness, is now excited about returning to everyday life.

"I’m just looking forward to getting down the café and reading the paper," he laughed to News Shopper.

Chris’s dad Dennis has Lewy body dementia and Parkinson’s, and he wanted to do something extraordinary to increase awareness and inspire others.

The Budweiser beer sales manager has so far raised £50,000 for Parkinson's UK, Lewy Body Society and Orpington's Saxon Day Centre.

After completing the triathlon, Chris told News Shopper: "I still can’t believe I’ve done it. We had a dream and that became reality.

"Everyone keeps praising me, but this is because of my team who were absolutely incredible.

"I’m so tired and have aches and pains, but nobody can wipe that smile off my face."

He described moments when his body was crying out for him to stop but said his team kept him going.

"I remember my best mate Rob said, and I’ll never forget it, he said 'Chris the sun is rising in 35 minutes' and I was swimming the channel in pitch black.

"I thought then that we can enjoy the sunrise together and I will never forget that."

Another key moment was approaching the French beach and thinking about swimming to shore to greet his wife and friends.

In total Chris ran 82 miles, swam 21 miles before finishing with a 181-mile cycle on Monday (August 5).

News Shopper:

He promised to never cause his family such stress again.

"They are relieved if I’m totally honest," he said. "What I put my body through was not normal and they were extremely worried.

"They know my mindset and that I’m not a quitter and I know they are really proud.

"My main objective was to raise awareness for the charities close to my heart and they are so happy because they knew I wanted the world record."

Chris said he "cannot believe" the media attention he is receiving and said being on TV is out of his comfort zone.

The amateur athlete, who now wants to help other people achieve their goals in future, said living a normal life for the rest of the summer is something he is craving.

"I’m just looking forward to spending time with friends and family," he said.

"I’ve missed out on stag parties, have not had a beer in ten weeks and I am looking forward to going out and drinking responsibly.

"I just want to get back to spending quality time with my wife, friends and my family."

You can still donate to Chris' fundraiser here.