Thursday, 22 September 2011

John O'Groats to Lands End: One Man's Journey (The Beginning)

For those of you who don't already know this, my Dad is currently day three into the most challenging run of his life, taking him the length of the country, starting at John O'Groats and ending 40 days later, at Lands End. 40 marathons in 40 days at 65 years old. Pretty impressive and some would say, bordering on madness. But there you are, that's my Dad...he does nothing by halves!

The journey has already this blog entry is released into the world he will have completed his third marathon, clocking up approximately 78 miles out of around 1,040. 

The point of this marathon of marathons is to raise money, £1 million no less, for Rugby's children's charity, The Wooden Spoon. That's where you, dear reader, come in. We need your help in raising funds and awareness, by donating and generously as you can and spreading the word across the world! (By the way, if anyone knows anyone who can help us get Dad into the Press, please contact us. Thanks!).

To add to the interest and for Dad to read when this challenge is done and dusted, I thought I'd write a blog of the update emails that Sally, his wife, sends out to the "team". I will, as much as possible, add an entry on a daily basis, covering the previous day's run and the challenges that it has brought Dad and his crew. Bearing in mind that he has already started the run, this entry will include days one and two, with three being posted tomorrow, and so on...

You can track Dad live each day during his can can "like" his Facebook page, you can follow him on Twitter and you can get all this and more, by clicking on his website below...

So, sit back, relax and enjoy as you marvel at how this crazy running enthusiast is getting on...

"Team Update: Day 1

Today went very well.  Stuart did his marathon in the 6 hours he had scheduled for it.  He had to have some padding put on his foot by Doc and had some cramp stretched out during the run by Andy. 
It was lovely and sunny for most of the run.  9C when he started and 13C when he finished but quite a cold wind at some times.  Scenery was stunning but i'm not sure how much of it Stuart saw!
Andy spotted a river near the finish and took Stuart to sit in there instead of an ice bath.  His mobile phone was in his pocket and did not survive the experience!  Hopefully we can transfer the SIM card within the next day or so.  Fortunately it was not the Blackberry donated by Wave Telecom.
Andy has put a video on Facebook that he took on his phone,  We will try to transfer some video to Crowd tomorrow.  We have been videoing, but it has been amazingly busy but we hope to improve our routine tomorrow, but we were just working it out today.  Tomorrow we have the added challenge of changing hotels at the same time, which should be interesting!
I don't  think the on-line tracking is working yet.  If anyone could fix that or let us know it has been fixed, we would be grateful,  he did not take his Blackberry with him today as he accidentally turned it off in the John O Groats car park and didn't have the pin code number for it.  It's all Ok now though and he says there has been quite an increase in mentions on tweets which is great.
That's all for now.  More tomorrow ..."

"Team Update: Day 2

Hello All
Well, it has been an amazing day today.  Really windy but dry to start with, but Stuart had some problems with his left achilles and the back of his right knee from yesterday.  Andy (physio) had treated these yesterday evening twice, but didn't want to do anything to inflame them.  Doc had given Stuart some painkillers last night and Voltarol gel for the back of his knee.  It was a very anxious time so early in the run and Stuart was obviously suffering mentally as well as physically first thing this morning.
It looked as if Stuart was going to have to walk the whole way today, and Andy walked with him for the first 3 miles or so, then he had some more treatment and some co-codamol and walked some more and tried some running but did not feel comfortable with it.  He wanted to be on his own for a bit so we went ahead and then next time we saw him he was running and didn't stop - apart from the hills. (Dick - funnily enough this must have been at exactly the time you emailed me to say he was been watched from above!  Graeme Beebee definitely has a hotline!).  Alan cycled with him for about 10 miles which was a terrific effort as it was raining by then and very cold in the wind.  He was freezing when he stopped.  It was also very hilly and over some pretty desolate moorland in parts, where even the sheep weren't interested in going.  Alan really kept Stuart's spirits up.
The next good news was that Andy called the next physio, David Hislop, who will be with Stuart down the West Highland Way, and discussed whether he would be happy to accompany Stuart in parts as Andy has done, and he is so that's great.
Around Armadale, a lady who had seen the advertising on the campervan and had looked up the website came out to run with Stuart. He was delighted and it gave him a real boost.  Caroline ran with him for 5 miles and then we drove her back home.  She had helped so much as there were some huge hills that they walked up together on the way to Bettyhill.  Photograph attached.
Stuart made a really strong finish and felt (and looked) better at the end than he did yesterday.  His running style looked much more comfortable today than yesterday.
I hope you have been following the real-time tracking on the website.  Thank you whoever fixed it - it is fantastic.  The observant amongst you may have noticed the spike in speed.  That was caused when Stuart took off his jacket with the Blackberry in the pocket and it travelled in the car for a short period!
Stuart's time was always going to be slower today because of the wind and the hills, but considering he walked quite a few miles at the beginning, 6 hours 10 minutes was amazing.
We had a toast this evening to Dick because our accommodation today is beyond fantastic.  Borgie Lodge Hotel - in the middle of nowhere (except fishing country) and run by a young couple who have just been here 3 months and the husband is an amazing chef - you must all find a reason to come here!  We have just had the most wonderful dinner and can't wait for breakfast!  We don't expect this in the Premier Inn so think we should make the best of it.
Lovely countryside expected tomorrow along the river Naver.  Don't know what the weather is doing tonight, but Alan and Doc are in the campervan tonight so no doubt we will find out tomorrow.  It sounds a bit stormy.
Thank you all for your good wishes for Stuart which he is finding really uplifting.
Sally x"

No comments:

Post a Comment