At the beginning of the year I started a running challenge in memory of Emma Broad, who sadly passed away in her sleep in May 2011, aged just 16, as a result of sudden cardiac arrest. Emma was a member of Surbiton Hockey Club and I had the privilege of coaching her for a number of years.
Emma was a beautiful and talented person. Her passion in life was hockey and she had played at Surbiton for many years, initially as a Colt before eventually breaking into the Ladies 1st XI squad. Representing England Under-16 Girls, she scored a goal against Germany whilst competing in Valencia during the Easter holidays a few weeks prior to her death. She touched the lives of so many and is dearly missed.
I initially set out to run the equivalent of a marathon distance for every week of the year (averaging 52 marathon distances in total in 2017) to raise awareness of the condition and much-needed funds for CRY.
After a positive start to my challenge, I recently completed the 1,363 total mile distance four and a half months ahead of schedule, and have now revised my challenge with a new target of running 2,000 miles in total by the end of this calendar year. For the past few months I have been averaging over 7.5 miles per day. So, if I miss a day, I know I will need to run a half marathon the next day to stay on track.
So far this year I have gone through 5 pairs of running shoes and spent just shy of 200 hours on the road – from the streets of South London, to the rolling countryside of Wiltshire, from the beaches in Florida, to snow storms in North Carolina, from the old railway trails in Pennsylvania, to canal paths in Holland. I look forward to many more adventures on the road over the coming months and hopefully raising more money to support the charity’s work.
I am currently living in North Carolina but will return to the UK in December where I plan to complete my challenge on New Year’s Eve this year.
Update – 6/04/18 – My initial goal was to run the equivalent of 52 marathons over the course of 2017 (an approximate average of 4 miles a day for year). I ended up surpassing that, totaling 2,364 miles for the year (the equivalent total of 90 marathon distances – I was still a little disappointed as I had my heart set on reaching 2,500 miles, but I hurt my Achilles with a fortnight to go) and raised just over £2,500.