Midas Marathon - Running for Help for Heroes

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Only Fools & Heroes - Lies, Damned lies, and laminated maps

Au revoir mon amis,

What a sorrowful summer it’s been for British sport. The lions failed to roar in Brazil, Murray melted in the Wimbledon sunshine, and our rugby and cricket teams crumbled. Cavendish & Froome forgot their stabilisers. On a brighter note though it’s now only 1420 days until the next World Cup. I can barely contain my excitement.

More imminently it’s less than 2 months until my caped crusading running persona returns and I depart from The Nags Head in Peckham with 300 miles to cover as I run to Lands End. Running nearly a double marathon every day for a week across some pretty hilly terrain is going to be a real challenge - it’s quite possibly the furthest anyone’s ever run in a Batman costume. I’ll have to let Norris McWhirter know.

So my latest training run saw me take on the Saffron Trail Ultra – racing across 70 miles of Essex’s finest countryside on an overnight jaunt. I decided to leave Batman at home for this one. I at least wanted to make it out of Southend in one piece. 6 p.m. on a Saturday night seems a somewhat peculiar time to be starting an ultra-marathon. It’s about the time I’m normally tucking into something stronger than an energy drink, splashing aftershave rather than deep heat, and wearing something a touch more flattering than lycra. But at least the route took me past some of Essex’s finest nightspots - I just needed to hope that they wouldn’t enforce a no-trainers policy.

Southend – home to the World’s longest pier and Countdown’s Rachel Riley (no one wants to look at a picture of a pier)…

 

70 miles was the furthest I’d run for a couple of years so I was relishing putting my body to the test. I was confident that my stamina would see me through to the finish. And more hopeful than optimistic that my navigation ‘skills’ would get me to the end. Otherwise it was going to be a very long night. There were fewer than 30 competitors in total so there wasn’t even much chance that I could follow anyone else. Especially in the dark.

I set myself a target of a 07:00 finish and breakfast in Saffron Walden.

70 miles of night-time running armed with just a few laminated maps - what could possibly go wrong…?

From the off it was pretty slow going. There are more hills in Essex than you’d realise (& starting at sea level there had to be more ups than downs). I was carrying a heavy backpack of extra clothes and kit, food and water which all added to the challenge. And then there was the weather. A somewhat sultry 26 degrees at the start soon gave way to torrential rain with a spectacular lightening storm. Impressive to watch, less pleasant to run through. It was energy sapping stuff and I was starting to wilt. Not for the first time in my life I was on wobbly legs at midnight on a Saturday.

With a tired body and mind my navigational lapses were getting progressively worse. The laminated maps seemed somewhat inadequate for the task. I learned many years ago that you should never trust anything that’s laminated. Or indeed most other things that were popular in the 70s. Reading the map was like attempting to piece together an intricate jigsaw puzzle whilst blindfolded. I was making mistakes, compounded by bigger mistakes. Navigating across farmers’ fields in the dark was becoming hopeless. For the first half the race I’d hung onto the coat tails of the peloton, a couple of which had the route plugged into their GPS devices. Once they’d dropped me and I was left to fend for myself I knew I was in trouble.

But then what’s an extra mile or two when you’re running 70!?

I have been known to wander around aimlessly at 3 in the morning after a heavy night, but this wasn’t funny. I had covered 40 miles in a painfully slow 8.5 hours. And a few of those were off course so I knew I still had well over 30 left to go. I was in 6th position & injury free but my will power was broken. And I was lost. For the first and last time I decided enough was enough and I just quit the race. I could rationalise this in lots of ways, and try to justify my decision in a plausible manner. But ultimately - on that one night - I was just mentally weak and gave in.

I’m still annoyed and frustrated with myself a week later. I’ve learned some lessons though and will never let myself be so easily beaten again. Let’s hope the England football team have similarly learned.

The haunting look of failure – what a plonker…!

 

So only 7 weeks till I run 300 miles dressed as Batman. And Batman never let anyone down. Although technically I’m running as Del Boy dressed as Batman… & Del Boy was somewhat less reliable!

If anyone would like to join for a few miles (on foot, bike, or by car) it would be great to have some company. The route and itinerary is below.

Equally I would appreciate any donations to support the fantastic work that Help for Heroes does for our wounded servicemen and women - please just click the bear - cushty!

And please spread the word to anyone else who may be interested - many thanks!

 

 

-To donate click here- 

Bonjour,

Del
 

♪ To the tune of Only Fools & Horses theme ♪

Stick a 9Bar in me pocket
I’ll fetch my Asics from the van
Cause if you want the best runs
And you don’t mind tensions
Then brother I’m your man

Where it all comes from
Is a mystery
I’m running for the Heroes

Don’t you see

But here’s the one that’s driving me berserk

Why do I look a fool and such a jerk

La la lala - la la la la la (repeat to fade)

Richard Kell
Midas Marathon

Only Fools & Heroes – Paris – Peckham - New York

April 6th – Paris Marathon – COMPLETED

Sept 7th – 13th – Peckham to Lands End (280 miles)

Nov 2nd - New York Marathon

Dressed as Batman!

Donate: http://www.justgiving.com/MidasMarathon

OR TEXT KELL99 (£10, £5, £3, £2 OR £1) to 70070 – Your text is free!

 

Phone: 07901 000729 or 01462 670202

E-mail: Richard@Midasmarathon.com

Web: www.Midasmarathon.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/midasmarathon

Facebook: www.facebook.com/onlyfoolsandheroes

 Twitter: www.twitter.com/midasmarathon

Itinerary

Day 1 – Sunday 7th September

Peckham to Fleet (41 miles)

Peckham – Clapham – Wandsworth – Kingston – Weybridge – Addlestone – Chobham – Camberley Heath – Frimley – Cove – Fleet

Day 2 – Monday 8th September

Fleet to Salisbury (48 miles)

Fleet – Hartley Wintney – Hook – Basingstoke – Oakley – Overton – Laverstock – Whitchurch – Hurstbourne Priors – Andover Down – Andover – Middle Wallop – Salisbury

Day 3 – Tuesday 9th September

Salisbury to Yeovil (45 miles)

Salisbury – Wilton – Barford St Martin – Compton Chamberlayne – Fovant – Donhead St Andrew – Shaftesbury – East Stour – Henstridge – Milbourne Port – Oborne – Sherbourne – Yeovil

Day 4 - Wednesday 10th September

Yeovil to Exeter (45 miles)

Yeovil – East Chinnock – Crewkerne – Roundham – Cricket St Thomas – Lydmarsh – Chard – Stockland – Honiton – Fenny Bridges – Fairmile – Rockbeare – Broadclyst – Clyst Honiton – Exeter

Day 5 – Thursday 11th September

Exeter to Launceston (41 miles)

Exeter – Whitestone – Tedburn St Mary – Cheriton Bishop – Crockernwell – Whiddon Down – South Zeal – Okehampton – Lewdown – Portgate – Tinhay – Lifton – Lifton Down – Launceston

Day 6 – Friday 12th September

Launceston to Truro (48 miles)

Launceston – Daw’s House – South Petherwin – Bodmin – Whitemoor – Nanpean – St Stephen – Tresillian – Truro

Day 7 - Saturday 13th September

Truro to Lands End (34 miles)

Truro – Comford – Lanner – Praze – Leedstown – Townshend – Relubbus – St Hilary – Goldsithney – Marazion – Penzance – Buryas Bridge – Drift – Sennen – Lands End

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Only Fools & Heroes - Paris édition

Bonsoir moi petit pois,

I’m not long back from beautiful Paris so I thought I’d drop you a quick line to tell you all about it…

Paris is the capital and most populous city of France. It is situated on the Seine River, in the north of the country, at the heart of the Île-de-France region. Within its administrative limits (the 20 arrondissements), the city had 2,234,105 inhabitants in 2009 while its metropolitan area is one of the largest population centres in Europewith more than 12 million inhabitants!

So then to the Paris marathon. One of the world’s largest with some 40,000 runners taking to the streets (5,000 more than London).  No one bothered to mention that in France fancy dress is somewhat less de rigeur than elsewhere. So out of the entire field there were perhaps just half a dozen of us dressed for the occasion. There’s me in my Batman costume without so much as a Robin by my side looking a right dipstick! I felt like a clown at a funeral. But we trotters are made of tough stuff so I wasn’t going to let that put me off my stride… I could leave that to the searing heat and my foam-lined costume!

The race started under clear blue skies and a hot sun and within no time at all I was sweating like a Scouser at the job centre. Thankfully the water stations were plentiful and each time it was a case of a bottle to drink & a bottle to pour over my head – providing welcome relief for all of about 2 minutes. I’d become a one man portable sauna, leaving a vapour trail in my wake!

The queue for the toilets went on a bit…

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To be fair, the French crowd were truly amazing! An army of runners had invaded and occupied their stunning city and yet they made us all feel so welcome. It’s good to see some traditions still going strong!

The benefit of standing out from the crowd was that I got the most fantastic support all the way around. “Allez Batman” was ringing in my ears and the cheers and shouts really kept me going. The cidre ‘water-station’ at mile 23 was a nice touch too (though contributed to a slightly longer race time)! As I came around the penultimate bend I pulled my mask back over my face and accelerated to a sprint. The crowd went wild! It was an incredible reception – like I’d just scored a winning goal at Wembley (or Stade de France) - a truly unforgettable moment.

Sprinting to the finish - Bonnet de douche

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He who dares wins, or in my case comes 8,203rd (3:40) but I did manage to overtake a couple of thousand people in the second half of the race as I adjusted to my impediments! I was also the first Superhero to finish!

Seize souixante quatre – Lovely jubbly…

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I’ve since run a trio of marathons during Easter weekend and have a 52 mile run across the Malvern Hills next week (incorporating 8,000 feet of climb) as I step up training ahead of my 300 mile jaunt in September. Indeed just recceing the route from Peckham to Land’s End was exhausting enough and that was from the relative comfort of my batmobile! So I need to take my training seriously.

The Afghanistan conflict may be drawing to a close, but as we have once again been reminded this weekend our troops remain very much in harm’s way. Those who have returned with life-changing injuries face a life-time of battles ahead. Help for Heroes exists to provide that lifelong support.

♪ To the tune of Only Fools & Horses theme ♪

Stick a 9Bar in me pocket
I’ll fetch my Asics from the van
Cause if you want the best runs
And you don’t mind tensions
Then brother I’m your man

Where it all comes from
Is a mystery
I’m running for the Heroes

Don’t you see

But here’s the one that’s driving me berserk

Why do I look a fool and such a jerk

La la lala - la la la la la (repeat to fade)

If you would like to donate then please just click the bear - You know it makes sense!

And please share the word with your friends & contacts too – thanks!

image

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26.2 miles dressed as Batman, running for Help for Heroes - If you want to support….www.justgiving.com/midasmarathon Thanks!

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Only Fools & Heroes

Au revoir mons amis,

I thought it about time I penned another blog as my sabbatical seems to have coincided with the end of civilisation as we know it. Since I last wrote Man United have been transformed from champions into chumps, the England cricket team have been humiliated in Australia, and sadly Piers Morgan suffered only very minor injuries during his batting duel with Brett Lee. These are indeed dark days. It’s all given me the right hump!

Though seemingly we are quite good at curling. And in a major shock Brit Dr. Patrick Barrie defeated the American legend Larry Kahn in the final of the World Tiddlywinks championships!!

Anyway it’s about time I got off my jacksie and did some more running. So after 5 years covering almost every inch of this country I decided it was time to globalise things and go international…the world after all is my lobster!

I was keen to maintain a TV theme after the Gavin & Stacey and Soapathon runs so needed a new mini drama for 2014. Something relevant, contemporary, and fun. I wanted to find an inspirational character who was entrepreneurial, internationally minded and a pillar of society. Exacting standards indeed, but I think I found him - Del Boy!

Ménage a trois - Trotting through New York, Paris & Peckham…

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So this year I will run in two of the World’s greatest cities. And Paris. The nearest Del Boy actually got to New York or Paris was a Manhattan in The Nags Head and his mastery of the French language - bonnet de douche!

Marathons in Paris and New York may not sound too arduous, but au contraire! Because you see I’m going to be running wearing 20lbs of Batman kit! I really am going to look a right plonker. A hot and sweaty plonker at that. Let’s just hope I don’t get pushed from the finish line in a wheelchair. That was embarrassing enough for Mo Farrah, but stone me, I’d look a right wally!

I’m still searching for a sidekick who can be my Rodney / Robin. Ideally I want someone with at least a couple of GCSEs and a trusting character, who is not too much of a dipstick. That bar is set way too high for most of my friends, but if you know anyone…

Caped market traders…

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Of course Peckham doesn’t have its own marathon. And anyway a superhero should be capable of much more than a mere 26.2 miles. So in September ‘Batman’ / moi will leave The Nags Head in Peckham, destination Lands End running the best part of 300 miles in a week. At least for once I’ve not had to plot a route to avoid any motorways as you wouldn’t Adam and Eve it but it seems the department for transport has only gone and forgotten to build any in the South West of England! Pot pourri!

Mon dieu! Less caped crusader, more fathers for justice…

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So the first leg starts in a couple of weeks (April 6th) in springtime Paris. I’m not sure our cheese chomping near neighbours ‘get’ Batman. To be honest if Bruce Wayne had been French, Monsieur Hollande would have taxed him out of Paris by now! And the French police would probably have gone on strike as a non-unionised Batperson was stealing their work. Undoubtedly they’d have been supported by the air traffic controllers, dockers and farmers because that’s just what they do in France. It’s compulsory. They teach it in the schools (when the teachers themselves aren’t on strike of course)!

I’m hoping this proves a nice little earner for our heroes. The war in Afghanistan may be nearly over, but for those who have suffered life-changing injuries, their battles are just beginning. We must not let them fight these battles alone. Many may need our support for half a century or more. Help for Heroes exists to provide that lifelong assistance.

Please support my modest endeavours to offer a helping hand to those who have sacrificed so much on behalf of us all. Lovely jubbly!

♪ To the tune of Only Fools & Horses theme ♪

Stick a 9Bar in me pocket
I’ll fetch my Asics from the van
Cause if you want the best runs
And you don’t mind tensions
Then brother I’m your man

Where it all comes from
Is a mystery
I’m running for the Heroes

Don’t you see

But here’s the one that’s driving me berserk

Why do I look a fool and such a jerk

La la lala - la la la la la (repeat to fade)

If you would like to donate then please just click the bears - You know it makes sense!

And please don’t keep schtum about it, if you could forward this to your friends & contacts, then that would be just cushty too – thanks!

image

-To donate click here-

Bonjour,

Del

Richard Kell
Midas Marathon

Only Fools & Heroes – Paris – Peckham - New York

April 6th – Paris Marathon

Sept 14th – 20th – Peckham to Lands End (280 miles)

Nov 2nd - New York Marathon

Dressed as Batman!

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Phone: 07901 000729 or 01462 670202

E-mail: Richard@Midasmarathon.com

Web: www.Midasmarathon.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/midasmarathon

Facebook: www.facebook.com/onlyfoolsandheroes

Twitter: www.twitter.com/midasmarathon

Donate: http://www.justgiving.com/MidasMarathon

OR TEXT KELL99 (£10, £5, £3, £2 OR £1) to 70070 – Your text is free!

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Soapathon Omnibus

Friends & Supporters,

 

Well, what a week it’s been in Albert Square, at Emmerdale, on The Street and in Hollyoaks! I’ve absolutely no idea what’s been happening on the shows – it’s been a case of just eating, running, sleeping – then repeating! But it was a thrill to visit all four iconic soaps.

 

After an emotional, exhausting struggle – and that was just trying to remember all of the stars’ names - here’s my account of Soapathon, with plenty of pictures to tell the tale for those of you who are far too busy to want to read my turgid ramblings!

 

Day 1 – Friday 24th May – EastEnders to Milton Keynes (38 miles)

 

After months of preparation, the Soapathon was finally upon me. As we wandered around an empty EastEnders set in Elstree, it all felt a little surreal. Not to mention somewhat cold and wet, with the promised late blast of Winter chilling the air. The BBC tea and the warmth of the green room just about kept the goose bumps at bay! Ducking into The Arches to avoid a shower isn’t something I ever imagined doing!

 

An EastEnd geezer…

There wasn’t even time for a quick pint in The Vic – which was probably a good thing ahead of a cold day of running (not to mention how bad the ‘beer’ in the soap pubs is said to taste)! I had to settle for a doorstep challenge instead with Shane Richie – he seemed to believe my whites were spotless!

 

Over the (Alfie) Moon…

I received some words of wisdom and advice from Ian Beale (though some hot food would have been more the ticket)! He completed a cycle ride from Emmerdale to EastEnders a few years ago, and his memory of the hills was still pretty vivid (I later came to appreciate why).

 

IanBealevable  - with the charming Adam Woodyatt…

And Queen of the Jungle Charlie Brooks was encouraging – being no stranger to a bit of running herself! I was interested in her nutritional tips – she had survived some gruesome bush tucker trials after all! We decided that our mutual love of peanut butter was the best source of fuel…unless things got really desperate (then I knew there’d be a Walkabout somewhere en-route serving kangaroo morsels)!

She’s a celebrity and a Butcher – the beautiful Charlie Brooks…

A final cuddle with a couple of small screen sirens was the perfect send off before I was cheered out of Albert Square by Alfie Moon, Kat Slater, and Sharon Rickman. As I said surreal! (Dum dum dum dum dum dumdumdumdah)

A thorn between 2 roses (Jessie Wallace & Letitia Dean)…

It was then back to reality and 38 miles of running! True to form I’d managed to get lost in the first 8 miles and had the ignominy of having to ask for directions. Though for once my navigational ineptitude had helped me stumble across a small short cut! The reception of passing motorists with beeping horns and cars stopping to give me donations was very welcome, particularly as the weather continued to deteriorate.

I was grateful for the company at various times of Ronan, Chris and Sean during what were thoroughly unpleasant conditions. Our spirits remained high despite being soaked to the skin and frozen to the bone. It certainly wasn’t helping my cold (verging on mild man-flu!) that I’d started the run with. The sight of my hotel was a very welcome one with the chance to dry off and prepare for day 2.

Howling northerly winds, incessant rain and the odd hail shower for good measure…

Day 2 – Saturday 25th May - Milton Keynes to Rugby (38 miles)

With a Lemsip and a couple of hot cross buns I was ready to get the second day underway. Other than my lingering cold and a few blister problems I was in pretty decent shape. I’d planned an early start to avoid the worst of the traffic. With 10 miles of running along a dual carriageway the fewer cars and lorries to dodge the better! A chilly start soon gave way to a pleasantly warm day, and my progress was good. It was an unremarkable trip to Rugby – my biggest challenge skipping around the assorted dead animals along the roadside, and more importantly avoiding joining them as road kill myself!

Day 3 – Sunday 26th May - Rugby to Nottingham (46 miles)

The third day brought with it the hottest day of the year – not something I’d prepared for – with my skin barbecuing nicely in the heat. The impromptu purchase of sun cream came a little too late to prevent some reddened flesh!

I had the welcome company of Mark for 14 miles (a personal record for him) which saw us make steady progress through to Leicester before we parted company leaving me just over 20 miles to complete till I made it to Nottingham. Shortly after leaving Mark my problems started with some acute pain at the front of my shins! My anterior tibialis had become inflamed and painful through over-exertion (possibly not helped by my lack of stretching pre & post workout). Running was now restricted to short painful downhill bursts as I made ever slower progress towards my destination. As the afternoon wore on, even walking became incredibly painful and my pace was nothing more than a dawdle. A rousing reception and hefty contribution to my collecting tin from a welcoming Nottingham hostelry helped reinvigorate me a little and I managed to run the final 2 miles. Time for a recuperative beer and some much needed physio!

More at home on a rugby field, Tigers fan Mr Mark Ward…

Day 4 – Monday 27th May - Nottingham to Barnsley (52 miles)

An 05:30 alarm call ready for a 7:15 start ahead of the longest and hilliest leg of my journey. My left leg was still incredibly painful and sore, but some ibuprofen and painkillers with my hot cross buns and I was as ready as I was going to be. I was joined for the first 10 miles by fellow Team 9 Bar athlete Kim Bent – A BMX champion not a runner. Sadly she had forgotten to bring her bike so we had to proceed on foot! We made reasonable pace, and the pain in my leg was bearable.

Kim Bent – more accustomed to racing BMXs than long distance running …

A further 10 miles or so in and I was in real trouble. I was struggling to even jog down some of the inviting slopes and was maintaining a fast hobble at best. And 30 odd miles is a long way to hobble! In the middle of nowhere a passing cyclist asked if I was OK, he told me he was a physio and said he’d return to fix me up! Ant (the physio) was good to his word and found me an hour or so later, to tape up my leg and give me some welcome advice. With 150 miles still to cover his intervention was very welcome! Though he was a physio when I was more in need of divine intervention!

My progress continued at what seemed a glacial pace, with the clock conspiring against me too. The later I finished, the less time for recovery I would have. Doubt was creeping into my mind. How an earth was I going to get through the next few days when I was in this state? I eventually made it to the hotel at 21:45 – Fourteen and a half hours after I’d started! Just time for a quick shower, a few slices of pizza and some ice packs on my swollen legs and feet before a little sleep. I had a 04:00 alarm call with my name on it.

I slept really badly, haunted by the worry I’d be incapable of meaningful movement when I awoke. I’m not sure if such events are covered by Premier Inn’s Great Night’s Sleep Guarantee!?

My swollen and disfigured trotters…

Day 5 – Tuesday 28th May - Barnsley to Emmerdale to Yeadon (36 miles)

It was an early start as I’d arranged to be at Emmerdale for Noon. I was leaving extra early as I just didn’t know how crippled my legs were going to be. I trotted out of the hotel at 05:00 into the Yorkshire drizzle. My toes hurt like hell, but I was moving and determined to run through the pain for a couple of hours at least to break the back of my journey. By this stage I was ignoring the safety warnings on the packets of Ibuprofen and painkillers, swallowing them at will. My strategy was working. Just about.

I made it as far as Leeds by which time I’d built enough of a time cushion to be able to walk the final few miles to the Emmerdale set at Harewood. Belief was beginning to return. Though I still had my biggest test to come.

A welcome sight after 200 long miles and 4 days…

I still had more than 7 miles to negotiate beyond Emmerdale to the hotel, so I couldn’t take advantage of a proper drink at The Woolpack, but was very grateful for a warming Yorkshire cuppa! A few quick pictures and I galloped off the set – in a tortoise like way.

The glamorous Meg Johnson and the gorgeous Michelle Hardwick…

Day 5.9/6 – Tuesday 28th May / Wednesday 28th May - Yeadon to Coronation Street (43 miles)

I’d got to the hotel in Yeadon at 15:30. An early finish to the day you might think. Not quite. I needed to be at Coronation Street in Manchester by the following lunchtime. I had 43 hilly miles across the Pennines to make – I’d cover that distance in less than 7 hours if fully fit, but I was clearly some considerable way below par! So I decided on a 23:30 start later that night. Not much time then for a shower, stretch, to ice my feet, a quick bite and for some much needed sleep.

A 22:15 alarm call wasn’t welcome, but certainly necessary. A cocktail of drugs and leftover Pizza and I was ready to tackle those hills.

Time to shine…

I made good progress through the night, with the pain and pills variously winning their on-going contest. The lack of traffic eased my passage, and it was eerie running through deserted towns and villages with nothing more than the odd fox for company. I was on schedule and now confidence was beginning to return that I would make my final destination after all.

As I made my gradual ascent up to the moors, my pace dropped with the temperature. The fog was thick and unpleasant. I was having to concentrate my shattered mind to pick out the vehicle headlights and make sure I was out of harms way as they blasted past. It was hard to believe it was nearly June as I pulled a second pair of gloves onto my numbed and freezing hands. A lamb called after me as I past, presumably asking what it had done to deserve being born into a world this bleak!

It really is grim up North…

Eventually the torment of Saddleworth was over and I was pleased to be entering Oldham. Not often can anyone have been so pleased to be in Oldham!

I had a treat in store (literally as we met in Tesco) as my friend David Bentley had arranged for running legend Ron Hill MBE to join me for a few miles (every little helps!). It was a real privilege to be running with one of the greatest distance runners of all time! Ron was the second man to break 2:10 in the marathon and set world records at four other distances. In 1970 he won the 74th Boston Marathon in a course record 2:10:30. He also won gold medals for the marathon at the European Championships in 1969 and the Commonwealth Games in 1970. All in the days before high performance footwear, gels and dietary innovation. It kind of put my own ‘achievements’ in context! He’s obviously also a clothing entrepreneur – and took the opportunity to promote some of his latest range!

Running with world record setter and marathon legend, Dr Ron Hill. I was just about keeping up with the 74 year old veteran…!

I was briefly set upon by 3 thugs as I entered Manchester’s city centre - as apparently - “You’re not from around here… I’m going to smack your arse”. Quite. I’d run 43 miles through the night, so I wasn’t going to let the local feral scum put me off course. After brushing them aside I made the final couple of miles, gingerly and painfully hobbling my way into the ITV studios and onto Corrie’s cobbled streets.

This boy wasn’t for Turn inn…!

I was running on empty and after a brief visit to the famous terraced streets was happy to be on my way to find my hotel and seek out my bed. For once I was going to have the luxury of a full night’s sleep – well 5 or 6 hours anyway!

Tony Hirst and Sue Cleaver outside the World’s most famous corner shop…!

Day 7 Thursday 30th May - Manchester to Hollyoaks (33 miles)

A 04:45 wake-up call was erring on the side of caution. I still needed to factor in an early pre 06:00 set off to allow my withered body the time to make the final 30-odd miles to Hollyoaks’ Liverpool set. Doped-up with enough pills to knock out an elephant, and with some freshly acquired compression support for my legs I headed out for the final time. With the end now firmly in sight I felt strong and made good progress, meeting another Team 9Bar runner, Charlie in Warrington for a couple of gentle miles.

Fellow Team 9Bar runner (and proper athlete) Charlie Sharpe…

The miles quickly ticked by as my motivation and focus dominated the pain. Before I knew it I was running past the security gate and onto the Hollyoaks set, cheered in by Kieron Richardson and Stephanie Davis who had been filming close by!

The beautiful young things of Hollyoaks. And me…!

I was given a rousing reception by the whole of Hollyoaks family and had ventured to the pub and been clubbing at The Loft - all before lunch.

James Sutton outside the final pub - completing the set…!

The Roscoes seemed pleased by the fact that I’d offered to get the first round in!

Hollyoaks pt II (at least I’m not the oldest in this picture)…!!

So after a really challenging week my journey was at an end. I was helped immensely by all of the support I had en-route, so thank you to everyone who played a part. Most of all I’m grateful to Helen, my understanding girlfriend, who receives the Best Supporting Actress award for driving every inch of the route with me and without whom I really wouldn’t have made it.

Best support team money didn’t buy…!

Obviously the purpose behind all of this has been to provide continuing and much needed support to our servicemen and women who have made sacrifices that have changed their lives for ever. Help for Heroes plays a huge part in helping to rebuild shattered limbs and lives – your support continues to be gratefully received.

If you would like to donate then please just click the bear!

-To donate click here-

Midas Marathon will return in 2014!

 

Best wishes,

 

Richard


Richard Kell
Midas Marathon

 

Soapathon | 24th -30th May 2013 | 300 miles from Eastenders to Hollyoaks via Emmerdale & Corrie!