Its been a fascinating two days, Ive run with an Olympic gold medal winner in the form of Richard Whitehead and Ive met Andy Holgate the man that’s showing the world that anything is possible if you put your mind to it.
My meeting with Andy , happened last night at Blackburn library as he begins his latest book tour. Dates as follows :
Barrow-in-Furness Library – Sat 14th September at 11am contact details here
Kendal Library – Fri 20th September at 6pm contact details here
Holmfirth Library – Weds 25th September at 7.30pm Book tickets here
Blackpool Library – Thurs 3rd October at 6pm contact details here
Chorlton Library – Sat 5th October at 2pm contact details here
Bolton Library – Tues 8th October at 7pm details here
Penrith Library – Sat 19th October at 10am contact details here
Carlisle Library – Sat 19th October at 2pm contact details here
In his talk Andy covered his early childhood love of sport and how that was robbed from him due to having to have major knee surgery, his years of gaining weight and depression and then how he ended up on the path to becoming an iron man through the encouragement of others. He made a point of stressing the importance of being prepared by having a plan, something which key to all long distance endurance races and as Andy put it “Plan your race, race the plan”. Training in all conditions is a must don’t let a spot of rain or the cold be an excuse to do nothing and giving it your all. From my own experience, i know how hard it can be to get back into training once you’ve had a break. If your not going to be competing to win, then compete against yourself and strive to achieve constant improvement.
He is also talked about the challenge of juggling a demanding training schedule with work and home life, something a lot of amateur marathon runners will appreciate. But as he said if you’ve got a dream or a goal you want to accomplish , there are 24 hours in a day to fit it all in, find the time not excuses. Although im not sure if i’ll ever be a 4 a.m runner!!!
And he provided us with this great quote :
Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the fastest lion or it will be killed. Every morning a lion wakes up. It knows it must outrun the slowest gazelle or it will starve to death. It doesn’t matter whether you are a lion or a gazelle: when the sun comes up, you’d better be running
With Richard Whitehead, i found it fascinating to be around him and his team, Richard was clearly feeling the strain of having run 18 times in 18 days and on Sunday he was on number 19, in 19 days. But everyone around him, was so positive and Richard remained calm and laid back, but determine to complete his challenge, no matter about the pain he kept on going, even though it would be so much easier to miss a day or two and no one would fault him, he pushed on. And today he is on marathon number 21, so he is still going strong , still working hard and still inspiring others and smashing down barriers.
So have two people here, who have over come the odds to get where they are today and who are still battling on in pain and discomfort to complete their goals and as each goal is completed, you just know they they are thinking, whats the next challenge.
Two very inspiration people there, who everyone can learn from. If these guys can overcome the barriers laid out in front of them, then there is nothing stopping the rest of us, obesity shouldn’t be the major problem it is. Lets get out there, lets get fit, lets improve our quality of life, lets enjoying getting fit and lets encourages overs to do the same. As if like Richard and Andy, if each of us can inspire just one person to take up sport, we will not only be improving that persons quality of life, but potentially , someone close them could also become inspired and so on and so on, until eventually the mindset of the people is changed and we no longer become slaves to a comfy life and the obesity epidemic will be nothing but a page in the history of humanity.
There is a world of people and challenges to meet out there, lets get out there and lets each bring one person with us into that world.
You can follow Richard Whiteheads epic & inspirational journey at :
And you can keep up today with Andy. showing us all its never to late to make a change at :
Right enough basking in the light of those that inspire us, Ive got a training schedule to follow.
So tonight an 8 mile run, at 8.20 pace. And Ive gone for a challenging out and back again run :
1hr06mins40secs is the target time and if i can get get through the first and hardest four miles in around 35 minutes then i should be good to make that.
As usual, i will report on how it went tomorrow , i feel tried, i will sore from Sundays run and im slightly stressed with how much work ive got on. But i’ll be out there tonight and feeling all the better for it.