Monday, 21 May 2018

Three hundred thousand pound barrier smashed

There are only two weeks to go before stage five of the run around the world gets underway in Belgrade, Serbia. While the final bits of planning and preparation are going well and I must say that the fundraising has exceeded my expectations way beyond what I ever imagined. 

It gives me great pride to report that the overall around the world fund passed through the £300,000 barrier this morning as the final few special edition t-shirts were sold.

It's not only me that should be filled with pride but everyone who has sponsored me over the years and donated to one of my chosen charities. Without the support of friends, colleagues, family and the wider general public none of this would have been possible.

Despite the amazing overall milestone of £300,000 being hit, there is still some way to go to hit my own personal target of £50,000 for the Road to Astana campaign. As per usual, I will be trying my absolute best to hit that target when stage 5 gets underway on June 4th 2018. It won't be possible without the amazing generosity of the general public. It's a generosity that I never have and never will take for granted. 

I should also mention that, as a result of using Virgin Money Giving (as opposed to other equivalent fund raising sites) to fundraise for the recent campaigns approximately £6,500 extra has been passed to the charities.

Finally, thanks so much if you've ever sponsored me. The totals below show where your money has gone. 

Monday, 7 May 2018

New Run Geordie Run t-shirt

Run Geordie Run t-shirts have raised over £30,000 over the years for local charities such as St Benedict's Hospice, The Children's Foundation, The Sir Bobby Robson Foundation and Useful Vision.

This latest design (once again by Dave at Shenton Creative) commemorates the up and coming fifth stage of the run around the world, the so called "Road to Astana". The snazzy red technical fabric garment features the 2900 mile route from Belgrade to Astana on the back of the t-shirt as well as the Run Geordie Run Around The World and St Benedict's Hospice logo on the front. 

I'm sure you'll agree that it's another brilliant design and I'd like to say a huge thank you to Dave at Shenton Creative for his efforts. Efforts, by the way, that have helped raise tens of thousands of pounds for charity. 

An absolutely massive thank you goes to my sponsor Fresh Freight Group who will be paying all production costs. In time honoured Run Geordie Run tradition this means that every penny that the t-shirts raise will go directly to St Benedict's Hospice. The t-shirts will go on sale for £15 meaning that the full £15 goes to St Benedict's Hospice. I'm so pleased that we are able to continue this fundraising approach with Run Geordie Run t-shirts.

If you would like to order a t-shirt then please follow the instructions in the order form below. T-Shirts will be posted after 1st June 2018.

22 miles to Brough Park

So it’s the morning after the day before. Yesterday’s 22 miles really serves as a reminder just how tough stage 5 of the Run Around The World is going to be when it gets under way in 28 days time. The task ahead is simple to explain. I’ve got 100 days to run from Belgrade through Serbia, Romania, Ukraine, Russia and Kazakhstan to Astana. I’ll be running 31 miles per day which will allow me to take 7 rest days during the 100 day period. And of course, I’ll be pulling a fully laden buggy weighing in at 110kg (17.3 stone). 

After yesterday’s 22 mile training run with Chappie (my Buggy) I felt very tired this morning. Really tired in fact. It’s a familiar tiredness that I’ve faced many times before during the 8,991 miles ran around the world so far. I shuddered knowing that I have to run 9 more miles per day over a 100 day period. If ever I needed a reminder as to how tough the task ahead is going to be, then yesterday was it. 

I must admit that it was a nice end to the run yesterday when I found myself at Brough Park to watch the Newcastle Diamonds take on the Ipswich Witches. The racing provided the usual level of excitement. It was great to be interviewed trackside after heat 8. Thanks Roy for asking some great questions.

The hero of the day with a brilliant final heat was captain Ludvig Lindgren who tipped off a great race meeting with a win that saw Newcastle complete a comeback to get a draw. The best part of the day for me was when Ludvig Lindgren took time out after the meeting to come and have a look at Chappie. He asked some great questions about my up and coming run and what life is like living in a buggy. 

I spent a lot of time talking to former Diamond Matěj Kůs (who was my favourite rider when I started attending the speedway 2 years ago). We chatted about the task ahead and he also talked about his recent experiences in Russia and the people that he encountered. To be able to spend some quality time with your heroes is quite amazing really. 

Thanks go to Steve Brock and Roy Clarke for setting things up at Brough Park. Thanks to Bob Beecroft for giving Chappie a lift home in his van. This meant that I didn’t have to run 14 miles home today. It also means that I’ve got time to carry out some important tasks today such as booking some flights. Thanks also go to everyone who put some money in Chappie’s basket yesterday. 

All in all it was a very tough but enjoyable day. Whenever there is money being raised for St. Benedict's Hospice it’s always going to be a great day. The Diamonds fightback and meeting my heroes was the icing on the cake. 

You can see the 22 mile training route that I took below.

Relive 'Bedlington to Brough Park'