The Virgin Money London Marathon Hokey Cokey......... has been the expected norm over the last five years, the ballot entry bore no fruit again. As I had done last year, after ripping Ironman's head off, and throwing my bluray collection of same self-titled films in the recycling, I submitted my application for a Gold Bond Place to once again support and run for ABF The Soldiers' Charity. Writing the application was relatively easy as most of what I wrote in last year's application still carried through, specifically and most predominantly my main reason for wanting to run the marathon again and support the ABF, Lloydy.

Bizarrely after completing last year's marathon, the thought never entered my head that I would not do it again in 2015. Such was the buzz surrounding the event itself, my own experience of it and not least, my performance not only on the day but also through the whole ten weeks I trained for it.  I proved to myself not only did I have one more marathon in me, I possibly had a few more! However, once I had submitted my application to Sophie of the ABF before the deadline of 9th October, it was very hard to concentrate on anything but hoping I would get that call.

That call duly came on my way home in the evening of Monday 13th October; luckily, Sophie managed to be able to tell me that I had once again, been selected, to run for them, before the inevitable dropping out of signal on my iShit. Her opening gambit went something along the lines of "looks like you better go for a run tonight", so I did, by means of celebration!

New training shirt selfie!
It's a huge honour and privilege to be given the opportunity to run and support the charity again and ultimately try and pay tribute to Lloydy by raising as much as I can for such a fantastic charity. Speaking of which, the link to my Marathon sponsorship page is live and can be 'clicked' on the right hand side of this page or via the link below: - 

The support I've received in the last two years since I began getting involved in the events I take part in has being nothing short of humbling and at times overwhelming. I never believed that the efforts would have got this far, and that is because of so many truly wonderful people, but please if you can, be even more wonderful, the ABF count on our support to carry on the fantastic job they do - celebrate a hero, my little brother, click on my link, it really is appreciated.

Once again, I know it's now that the hard work starts, during the colder, darker months, when the head is just as inclined as the heart to look out the window and declare "f*** that"! But with last year's efforts still pretty fresh in the mind the impetus is still there and if truth be told, I can't wait to get started. I've set myself a target of 3:30 in 2015, which is 8min miles, more than achievable going on this year's efforts and with the full 16 weeks to aim at instead of trying to cram it into 10 weeks after The Winter Fan Dance.

I am at present; still recovering from a knee injury, but with three solid weeks of building the strength back up, the knee is beginning to show signs of a proper recovery. Although I haven't 'pushed' it too hard yet, I have subjected it to quite a few 4/5 milers now and some pretty serious tabbing miles with 42lb on my back and it seems to be holding up ok. So I'm hopeful before long I'll be back to throwing the serious miles down! 

With the tabbing in mind, the last serious event of the year I'm taking part in, looms large. In a little over 4 weeks I will, once again, be back in Brecon, with the 'Dirty Dozen' taking on 'Point to Point', in full kit and a minimum of 40lb on the back, should be a giggle, jelly babies standing by! Hopefully I'll have the energy after to write about the experience........

I know it's been a while since I last updated this blog, but I'm sure in the coming months there will be plenty to write about,  not least the next three events, and the blood, sweat and tears that are given in their pursuit.

I would like at this point to say thank you to Sophie and ABF The Soldiers' Charity for giving me this opportunity again and to those awesome people who have already donated! And lastly a thank you to my gorgeous wife for supporting me, despite knowing that for the next 6 months I'm going to turn into a running bore - I'd be lost without you Mrs R xxxx

Big love all! x


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