I find it a bit strange sitting here writing this as I haven’t technically run at all in the last 7 years!
For those that don’t know me already, I’m the one who ‘runs’ in a wheelchair – not the crazy one who dresses up (that’s Peter Smorthit), but the fatter one trying to loose weight. I’ll spare the gory details, but basically I was commuting home from London one evening and slipped off a platform edge (not while drunk!) a result of which means I’m a bit shorter. Luckily enough Command Officer Lieutenant Colonel Mark Budden from 101 Engineer Regiment and two members of the public; Pamela Abbott and John Thorp were on the platform and knew what to do. After a few months in hospital I returned to work in September 2013 and use the same platform to this day (albeit not during lockdown).
My general forms of exercise started around water. A long time ago I used to be a dive master, and had a dream of flying helicopters in the Navy, but ended up going in a different direction.
I found ‘open water’ swimming after jumping in a lake one evening to cool off, since then I completed various ‘Great Swims’ (Serpentine, Windermere, Lock Lomond, etc), gradually building up from a mile to two miles, etc.
The couple of years back someone jokingly said I should do a triathlon. I never turn down a challenge, specially a crazy one, so I decided to investigate running and cycling with no legs. The cycling part was easiest; buy a hand bike, get some Lycra and try not to get hit by cars. As for running, I wasn’t too sure what to type into Google, but went along to my first RunThrough event in Battersea Park in October (it seems very strange that my first event was only a few months ago).
Since then I’ve completed two sprint distance triathlons at Dorney Lake, and have signed up for two marathons; London 2020 (or 2021 if it gets moved again) and Brighton 2021.
My other hobbies include skydiving, kayaking, abseiling and SCUBA diving; as my friends say I never have my feet on the ground…. If anyone likes (or needs to overcome a fear of) heights, the abseil team at the Orbit Tower in Olympic Park are very pro and you get a great view over London.
Various people mention the ‘RunThrough Family’ on facebook etc, it seems strange, but it does feel like a family – perhaps as everyone secretly hates running and is only in it for the flapjack.
It’s awesome to see the team still coming up with ideas during the lockdown period. Organising virtual events at the drop of a hat and shipping the new kit is no easy challenge.
Hope to see everyone at an event soon!
Here’s a quote that I hope to see on a board one day – ‘Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you’re right’ – I think it was by Henry Ford.