Saturday, 31 December 2016

End of the year


I have to give a big thank you to everyone who has contributed to this fund-raising endeavour. It's been a challenging year, but great to complete it.

I raced for almost 10 hours 40 minutes across the 12 events, climbing over 1,800m / 6,000ft during the 109km / 67.4miles of road, trail and fell (thanks to Saddleworth Rangers for the wine to commemorate my first ever fell race - I feel I earned it, Alderman's Ascent was tough). Within this I was hoping for a 5km sub-25 and a 10km sub-50... I set a new 5km PB, with 24m 33s during a virtual race, and set a new 10km PB, with 51m 7s during the Great Manchester Run (not quite to target, but close - I'll have it in 2017!). Finally, every single race I completed was a course PB! That's quite the year given I only started running with a club a couple of years ago. I hope you've enjoyed watching it unfold :)

Importantly, we have together raised £3,243 - a sum way beyond the £2,400 target, which is amazing.

Thank you to all the individual contributors, both in the UK and overseas. Thank you to my work colleagues for their support and to my employers, Sopra Steria, for providing fund-matching. Thank you to Seen Opticians who generously donated and from where I got my distinctive running specs. Thank you to my fellow runners in the Greenfield Greyhounds and in the other clubs near where I live (Saddleworth Runners, Oldham & Royton Harriers, Royton Road Runners and Hyde Village Striders to name a few), both for organising races and for being great running buddies and competitors.

Finally, a massive thank you to my family for all their support - for those that have come to races and have donated and send words of encouragement; for my mum and dad, who have attended almost all my races this year despite a busy work schedule; and for my lovely daughter and wife, who have put up with me being out training and racing and have also attended almost all my races and given me the support, time and encouragement I needed to get through it all. I love you all so much.

And so the challenge has ended. The races have been run. The money raised, 100% of which goes to the children I'm supporting in Zambia and in Haiti. It's been so important to ensure that these vulnerable children have food and drink, clothing and shelter and to encourage the workers that their efforts are noticed and valued. To ensure that the boys and girls in Zambia have the sustenance they need to learn well. To ensure the boys and girls in Haiti still have an orphanage to call home.

You can continue to donate to these worthy causes up until the end of January 2017 - if you were waiting for me to complete the challenge, now is the time to give!

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