After the success of the Spring Marathon Sponsored Athlete Programme in 2018, Rudi from the Treatment Lab and I decided to do the same again for 2019.
We also approached Up & Running, Milton Keynes to see if they would like to be involved and they jumped at the chance and said YES!
Applications opened for a period of two weeks and we had over 60 runners apply for the two positions.
The Athletes would be able to benefit from the following as part of the programme:
Monthly Sport Massages with Rudi with extra sessions leading up to race day
Monthly PT sessions, weekly core classes and a training plan from Clean Coach Katie
Gait analysis and a free pair of trainers up to the value of £120. Nutritional advice and race day nutrition from Up & Running.
Ongoing support from all three to achieve the best on race day including training advice, nutrition support and coaching throughout the process
The selection process was a tough one with the calibre and sheer volume of applications we had received. As a team we wanted to work with a female and male athlete and also one runner taking on their first marathon and one trying to improve on a previous experience.
The lucky winners have recently been notified and both gladly accepted their places onto the programme.
We are very excited to announce our athletes to you…
Target Race – London Marathon 2019
My names Katie Elmer, I’m 33 (soon enough) and mum to Emily & Jake. I live with my partner Ben & we’ve been together for 13 years.
I joined Redway Runners in January 2017 as a beginner not being able to run for 30 seconds, my aim was a 10K race in August which I completed.
Fast forward to this time last year & I felt like running wasn’t for me, I didn’t feel like I was improving & in fact felt slower.
On the 1st January this year after park run I saw a photo of myself that changed the way I was thinking, I decided to concentrate on running more & eating healthy, before I knew it I was absolutely loving running & everything about it.
I completed the same 10K race this year & knocked 17 minutes off my time set the year before. I completed my first half marathon in May 2018 & I enjoyed every single step!
I had always said I would only ever consider running one marathon & that would be London.
After the 4th year of applying the charity I founded in memory of my daughter Emily won a place in the ballot & everything pointed at me to take that place & run it for her…
When I saw the applications open for the sponsored athlete program open I knew I had to apply, after seeing the help & support Sally got last year through the program I knew it was something that too could help me.
When I opened up the “congratulations email” I burst into tears…
Having their belief that I can do this means so much, it’s going to be hard work but also enjoyable to complete a dream for myself in memory of my daughter
Watch out London, I’m coming for you!!
Target Race – Manchester Marathon 2019
I am 38, married with a 6 year old daughter. My running journey began in 2014 when myself and around 100 others ran the MK Half & Full Marathon on behalf of a charity called Team George, which was set up by our 2 friends who lost their newborn son.
As many have done before, I did everything wrong in the build up, too much too soon, pushing through pain and ended up getting myself injured. The 2 months before the run I never got further than 5 miles, I considered pulling out but am too stubborn for that. I made it round on the day but knew I could do better. I then stopped running and went back to playing football, I did the MK half again in 2015 and was happy with my time, I again stopped running and went back to playing football and didn’t run for 18 months.
2017 – my aging years and poor fitness meant that football was coming to an end, so again I thought the MK half would help. I put in the same training as 2015, but it didn’t come as easy this time, I struggled, I hated it. Instead of stopping after this, I thought ‘I’m going to up the training!’ – again I got injured! I visited Rudi and he helped me sort the problem, he also recommended Katie’s core class.
This is when things changed. I always had the motivation to get myself out the door but lacked knowledge on keeping myself fit. I joined the Redway Runners, I made friends, it made the runs easier and more enjoyable. Running became a happy habit. Consistency, intervals and core work, all three of these together helped me get fitter. I decided that it was now or never and entered myself into the London Marathon for 2018. It had always been a dream, but I always thought it would stay a dream.
Training went better than I could have hoped, I stayed injury free, I enjoyed my long runs, I made more friends, I PB’d at every distance. I finally felt like a runner rather than a retired footballer trying to lose weight!. Race day came, along with the sun! I was naive with how much it would effect me. I struggled, it was painful but I got round and had an amazing day. I wanted to do it again!
So we come to now, I’ve kept up my running after London, I entered Manchester marathon as my target race, it’s my chance to get a time I could be proud of. Then I got the news that I would be the CCK/Treatment Lab/Up and Running sponsored athlete. I am honestly so excited by this, to have the support and knowledge of the team can only help me. I watched Sally and Ben’s journey last year, I was in awe of Ben’s times, he seemed to get quicker with every run, I read his blogs trying to find his secret! I then started reading Sally’s blog, her struggles with injury resonated with me, her stubbornness to not give up and mental strength throughout made me wish I could be that strong!
I am so excited by what 2019 can bring, Manchester I am coming for you!
Two very inspiring stories and one thing they have in common is determination! Rudi, Dionne and I can’t wait to begin our work with the athletes and kickstart the process. Each athlete will be documenting their journey through a blog. When we have more details we will share these with you.