23rd August 2018
Andy gets set to complete four half marathons in four months in aid of Nottinghamshire Hospice
A Nottingham man who only started his training in March is getting ready to undertake his fourth half marathon in four months in aid of Nottinghamshire Hospice. Andy Middleton, from Gedling, is now on the last lap of his challenge after agreeing to run a combined distance of 52.4 miles.
The 47-year-old completed his third race, the Newark Half Marathon, last weekend and is now in training for the Ikano Bank Robin Hood Half Marathon, in Nottingham on September 30.
Andy, who is taking on the challenge alongside Katie Sutton, an account manager at his design, print and marketing firm, Ginger Root, began with the Market Bosworth Half Marathon in May, after he got back into running just two months earlier.
He then took part in and completed the Market Harborough Half Marathon in June, which set him up for the race in Newark.
However, the race didn’t quite go to plan, with an injury twinge on the fourth mile threatening to force him to pull out. Instead, he gritted his teeth and pressed on, eventually crossing the line in a time of two hours and 55 mins.
Andy says that although the experience has been harder than he thought, the sense of achievement and the people he has met along the way has made every painful step worth the effort.
Andy said: “I used to be fairly fit when I was younger and did plenty of running, as well as sports like kick-boxing, so when I agreed to do the challenge, I fooled myself into thinking that my body was as fit and able as it was back then. On my first training run I had to stop for a rest at the end of my road, which was when I realised that it was going to be a lot harder than I’d anticipated, and I’ve had to dig deep in order to complete the races.
“It’s been wonderful though. My grandmother worked in a hospice and it’s such a wonderful cause, while I’ve lost a lot of weight and discovered the social side to running.”
And, with entries for the Robin Hood Half Marathon still available, Andy, who is aiming to raise £1,000, is encouraging more runners to pound the streets in aid of the hospice which is on the lookout for more people to take part in the race and raise funds on its behalf, helping it to raise the £2.7m it needs to keep operating every year.
Sarah Dunning, Corporate Fundraiser at Nottinghamshire Hospice, said: “Andy has proved that you don’t have to be a superhuman athlete to undertake a personal challenge, you just need a sense of dedication and the determination to keep going.
“His story is so typical of our charity challengers, who want to do something different, daunting or demanding and use the opportunity to raise money on our behalf, which allows us to continue the vitally important work that we do.”
The hospice aims to raise £30,000 through its Charity Challenges programme this year. To find out how you can help, contact the fundraising team on 0115 910 1008, email email@example.com or go to www.nottshospice.org/challenges