‘In October 2015, the charity Mind offered me the chance to run the London Marathon in April 2016. At that point, I had only ever completed 3 half marathons and would call myself a novice runner. So much has changed in the last 2 years. I am now a qualified running leader supporting the amazing Kingsway Runners. I have completed 5 marathons and over 50 half marathons. I have raised £8,500 for Mind, £500 for Cancer Research UK and £2000 for Backcare UK. In April 2018, I will lead a team of 10 runners into the London marathon with a team target of £13,000. Running is excellent for our health and wellbeing, however more importantly you meet new friends and share truly memorable experiences together.’
‘Our team from Stroud District Council ran The Westonbirt House 10k to raise awareness of the dangers of nut allergies, while raising much-needed funds for the Amy May Trust. The Trust has been set up to help fund the continual rehabilitation and medical needs of Amy May Shead, who suffered a severe brain injury through catering negligence, as a result of a nut allergy. Our team is made up of Sara Chardin, Emma Blomfield, Helen Johnstone, Pippa Stroud and Ian Bird.
The reason for running is a personal one as Amy May Shead’s is my cousin. Amy managed her severe life-long nut allergy with care, but didn’t let it stop her living life to the full. She was a talented producer on ITV’s This Morning. On a weekend break to Budapest in 2014, she took the first bite of a meal, which she was assured didn’t contain nuts. She immediately experienced a catastrophic anaphylaxis reaction, which led to cardiac arrest. As a result, Amy sustained a severe brain injury due to being starved of oxygen for six minutes.
During the three years since the incident, Amy has progressed slowly, but surely, from being in a coma in ICU in a London hospital, via a neurological rehabilitation hospital to a specialist care facility in Essex. The next move planned for Amy will be to live with her parents, who are in the process of adapting a new home.
Due to the restaurant in Budapest not holding public liability insurance, and travel insurance not covering her lifelong condition, there is no compensation for this life-changing and devastating tragedy. The Amy May Trust has been set up to fund the much-needed therapies (speech and language therapy and physiotherapy). Amy is unable to communicate, but it is clear she understands everything that is going on around her. Sara has seen for herself what a visible difference these treatments are making to Amy’s life.
Another member of the team, Emma Blomfield, is an EpiPen carrier herself. Only recently diagnosed with a nut allergy, Emma is especially keen to spread awareness of how dangerous this allergy can be.’
‘As a 55-year-old blind woman I never dreamt that I could become a runner until I joined “VI runners Bristol“. This is a group set up by Colin Johnson, he has organised a team of guides to train and run with visually impaired people. I joined the group in May 2017 and I have completed 4 Park runs and the Castle Combe chilly 10k. I love running and if I can do it anyone can’.
‘The 10k Chilly at Castle Coombe was my race 10 of 30 in my Run 30 for 30 challenge. It started back on the 3rd of August when I turned 30. I decided that I would run in 30 races to help support a local cause. Each of the races I have completed so far have been of varied lengths- 5k, 10k and half (my first Marathon is next year in Newport). I am raising money for the Great Western Hospital Brighter Futures Radiotherapy Appeal. So far we have raised over £600 and aim to make well over £1500. I have competed dressed up and have travelled quite a distance in my running garb (and the odd fancy dress) to challenge myself and to raise awareness for this great cause. My just giving page is www.justgiving.co.uk/run30for30.’
‘Everyone hears of cancer and the horror stories surrounding it. I found a lump in my breast in Sept 2015, thought I best get it checked out. My doctor booked me into the breast clinic. Once all the tests had been done I went for the results, still no care in the world and a positive mind set(with a plan to head out for lunch with my chap and enjoy the rest of my day off). Imagine my surprise when my consultant dropped the bomb shell! I’d gone right off my lunch by this point and my roller coaster of emotions, surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy began.
Hope for tomorrow gave me the option to choose where I had my chemotherapy treatment, this made me feel a little more in control of a situation where I knew I had to hand myself over to the medical profession. DB Max has given me the opportunity to give something back to a service where words will never be enough! Thank you!
I’ve been given the all clear and training for this 10k has helped me get stronger in mind and body.’
A regular look at some of the inspirational stories from some of our amazing DB Maxers……
This week it’s Gareth Channings and his friends and family who took part in The proto-col Chilly 10kwith us. They are all raising money for Gareth’s son.
‘I ran the last Chilly 10k at Castle Combe and thoroughly enjoyed it, so signed up again this year. My son Jack has Duchennes Muscular Dystrophy ( DMD ) and I thought this would be a good way of fundraising for him . I also thought it would be fun to get a group of us together to do it, as well as getting a few unlikely people up and running!! We are raising money for Jackjustwantstobe so the family home can be adapted and extended to cope with Jacks ever changing medical needs, please feel free to look him up and follow him on Facebook plus we have a Go Fund page www.gofundme.com/Jackjustwantstobe.
I would like to say a massive thank you to DB Max events for all their help and support with putting this together.’
‘I know Jack through his Dad Gareth who is my boss. I understand Jack is a very happy little lad who just gets on with his life although he has duchenne’s, (progressive muscle weakness). Gareth is a very fair boss who remains professional even though he has everything going on at home. I understand Jacks disease and can’t imagine what the family and the little lad are going through… he is a true credit and is proving you must make the most of every day!’
‘I ran the 10k for my nephew Jack who has Duchennes Muscular dystrophy . He means the world to me and my family . Like any little boy he wants to live at home with his family . In order to make this happen we need to raise enough money to build an extension on the house that allows for hoists and specialist equipment such as ventilators and a specialist bed. We appreciate every penny that has been donated either through his just giving page or by sponsoring one of the other very special people that support us as a family in this difficult journey . Please feel free to check out his Facebook page Jackjustwantstobe to understand further his condition.’
‘The big C hit me totally off guard. A happy healthy single mummy to a wonderful two year old, a well accomplished staff sergeant with 19 in the British Army on the brink of commission as a late entry soldier.
In Feb 2015, a small area of tissue felt different, on visiting the doctors I was told it was nothing to worry about so I left it. By August 2016 it was still there so I pushed for a referral to the Thirlestaine clinic in Cheltenham. A few days later my world fell apart. After an ultrasound, mammogram and a few biopsies I was told I had to wait for the official results but I would start my care program in my next visit.
I sat in the car and cried. Would I get to see my beautiful daughter go to school? How do I tell my family and friends?
Three weeks later I was called back for my results. My surgeon was the one to tell me and she was amazing. Judged me perfectly. She was straight talking and had my plan for treatment all ready.
Within the week I started chemotherapy and the long road to recovery. Chemotherapy was awful, but every time it got painful or too much I would remind myself that it would all be worth it.
And it was now in Aug 2017, after 6 rounds of chemotherapy, a full mastectomy and rebuild and 3 weeks of radiotherapy I am back out running and enjoying life.
I could not have done it with my family and friends, especially my mum Fiona Poulter. My rock through it all looking after my daughter, dog and I for most of it. She has had a harder year than me. So to all carers out there, Thank you.’
‘Steve and I have been running for a few years and we have both in the past completed half and full marathons. In June 2016 however our lives were turned upside down with the news that Steve was diagnosed with Stage 4 kidney cancer. Unfortunately, by the time it was discovered it had already spread to his lungs and from the off they were talking of containment rather than cure. Despite this devastating news, Steve has remained incredibly positive and has continued running – In fact we have just finished a challenge to complete all 23 Welsh parkruns in 23 weeks for 2 cancer charities to say thank you for the support and treatment they have provided so far – Velindre Cancer hospital in Cardiff and Macmillan Cancer support.
Despite Steve’s health issues and maybe because of them, we set ourselves this challenge for the first 5 months of 2017. Beginning on 31 December 2016 at Llanelli Coastal parkrun, the tour has taken us as far West as Aberystwyth and as far North as Bangor and lots of places in between. The 23 in 23 challenge raised an amazing £10,000 so far for those 2 charities and we wore our 23 in 23 shirts whilst completing the Westonbirt House 10K.
Steve has found continuing to run through his treatment has helped him focus on something much more positive than cancer. He felt like stepping up from a 5K, so the Westonbirt House 10K was selected as the next running challenge for us. It looked like a great event and to be honest, I saw the medal and it just had to be done. We really hope that through Steve’s amazing efforts continuing on his running journey and not giving in to cancer we are hopefully inspiring people to carry on running even when they don’t really feel like it. If Steve can do it then you can do it :)’
“I took up running in March 2014, one month after starting Slimming World in a bid to do something about my weight after my daughter expressed her concern.
My initial target for running was to complete the Chippenham 5k river run in the July of the same year, which I did. Eight months after starting Slimming World I had lost 7 st 3 lbs and got the running bug. Something I never had before. I completed my first 10k in the October of that year (Calne Clock Tower Challenge) and did several other 10k races in the following year before running my first half Marathon (Chippenham) in September 2015.
I’ve now done three half marathons in total with a target of at least two this year (Bath this year is my first) and while I’ve lost a bit of speed this year, I still get as much of a buzz as I did when I started.
The Chippenham 10K was a local event that kept me on the path towards my goal this year, of two half marathons and gives my running a focus. Now that I’ve achieved my initial targets it’s now about consistently and keeping it going. I do try to spread the word on running and try to encourage people to at least try the Couch to 5k, even if all you want to do is run with a buddy “.
“I was morbidly obese in Jan 2016 and weighed 23 stone. I couldn’t run a mile or even 100m for that matter! I was playing rugby and embarrassed myself on the pitch being so unfit in front of my 9 year old son, so on that day (Jan 4th 2016) I joined a slimming world group. I lost 1 stone in my first week. I lost 2.5 stone by February 2016 and started running….1 mile at a time…..over the months I built it up and continued to lose weight. 7 stone lost in 7 months and I managed to build my running up to a 10K race….then a half marathon.
I now run regularly with a club and I’ve completed 3 half marathon with more booked. Also I’ve taken on loads of 10ks on and off road and cycled the Malvern Madhatter 75 miler. This year my big events are Ride London and London Triathlon Olympic distance so Westonbirt was my first ever tri.
I’ve now lost 8 stone in total and don’t intend on losing any more. I’m a different person I can do everything I want, I’m no longer under a specialist for chest breathing problems and my blood pressure for the first time in adulthood is “normal”!”