Twelve months on

Anyone who has read this blog over the years will be aware of my annual struggle to get into London, dropping my ballot entry in every April and then inevitably getting the dreaded SORRY! magazine in the post six months later, dashing my hopes and dreams for another year. But, finally, this year, I’m in. I’m there. They couldn’t stop me forever.

The last leg

I must have started writing at least three or our four blogs this year with words along the lines of “I don’t even know where to start with this one” or “this is one of the hardest blogs I’ve ever had to write”, but this time it’s truer than ever. It really has been. The fact that it’s taken me until nearly the end of the year to report back on September’s Great North Run tells its own story but I mean, seriously. How can I adequately sum up all that’s been achieved this year?

1013.4 / 1000: The RideLondon-Surrey 100

So there we are. Just look at the post title up there – we’ve done it. Following the completion of the RideLondon-Surrey 100 at the end of last month, we’ve now covered 1000 miles for motor neurone disease, and with events still to spare. A target we thought ridiculously over optimistic last November when we first began dreaming up this mad year of challenges is in the bag and we can all sit here and be extremely proud of the fact that we’ve achieved the aim of carrying ourselves through nothing more than human horsepower (and malt loaf) the equivalent of from Leamington Spa to Lake Garda. And best of all, we’ve raised nearly double our original target of £3000 for the Motor Neurone Disease Association.

It’s been quite a year.

913.4 / 1000: Coast to Coast

It’s 8am and the four of us are in Whitehaven, stood in the early morning drizzle with the back wheels of our bicycles plonked in the Irish Sea. It’s gloomy, it’s dark. It’s a little bit chilly with a fairly ripe breeze on our backs. It most definitely does not feel like early July. The main event of our 1000 miles for MND challenge is about to start and none of us are remotely looking forward to what lies ahead. None of us can believe this day is actually here.

From sea to sea

This Saturday morning four of us will dip the wheels of our bikes into the sea in Whitehaven on the western coast of England and attempt to pedal 140-odd miles to Sunderland before tea time on Sunday to do the same over there on the eastern coast.

136.3 / 1000: The Great Manchester Run

Such was the level of success across the board during last month’s Great Manchester Run that I’ve been struggling to even know where to start with this one. Ten of us started the Great Manchester Run and I’m delighted to say that all ten finished, with each and every one achieving something significant along the way.

Full circle

It’s time to return to the very roads where it all began, the scene of my very first ever 10k back in 2008. And this time I’m not alone.

I’ve literally lost count of how many of my friends are also out running on Sunday, with all of us having our own aims and challenges for the day, including three people running their first ever 10k. Two of the three are Jonny and his sister, both running in full MNDA colours and adding a few more miles towards our 1000 Miles for Motor Neurone Disease challenge.

111.4 / 1000: The Stockton Duathlon

The Stockton Duathlon on April 24th 2016 was the second event on our calendar and Jonny’s first, and with three participants alongside him it means following their successful completion of run / bike / run a fortnight or so ago we now stand at 111.4 miles, just under a tenth of our mammoth total in the bag. Here’s his story of how it all went.

Losing a Manchester Marathon

So it turns out that for three straight years from 2013-2015 the Manchester Marathon wasn’t actually a marathon at all but was in fact only 99.1% of one. My 2014 effort no longer counts for anything.

26.2 / 1000: The Greater Manchester Marathon 2016

Round #1 is now complete, the Greater Manchester Marathon is officially done and dusted. 26.2 out of 1000 miles for motor neurone disease are safely in the bag. We’re finally underway people, and we’ve hit our original fundraising total already with 973.8 miles still go. You are all ridiculously amazing, aren’t you?