Saturday, July 07, 2007

New York

If you read "Stop", you may agree with me that it's kind of ironic that just as I start to think about scaling things back I sign up to something challenging like back to back marathons. On different continents. Oh well...

I'm fed up of not being able to talk about this, so it's time to get it out there. On 4 November I will be running in the New York Marathon for a charity called XIII Heroes. Even though I'd already signed up for Amsterdam by this point (that is on 21 October*), the opportunity to get involved with this was too good to turn down. Admittedly I was very drunk when I first agreed to do it, but since then I've had time to consider it sober and it still seemed like a good idea.

It's no ordinary charity place. I've always said that I wouldn't do a race through a charity just to get into it. There are other races I can do while waiting to get a place of my own in the big ones, whether it's through ballots or qualifying times or club places. So finding myself signed up to a charity complete with a mandatory fund raising target is a bit of a turnaround. But it's a bit special.

Last year XIII Heroes helped Matt King achieve a world first by completing a half marathon. Matt was very seriously injured a few years ago in a rugby accident, and is now on a ventilator and in a wheelchair. He's the first person to do a half marathon in that condition, and wants to be the first to complete a full one too. For the Great North Run he had a team running with him, for support, fund raising, moving discarded water bottles out of the way and stuff like that, and that's what I'll be doing in New York. I've achieved a dream by running a marathon, and it's time to help someone else do the same thing.

This might actually help me slow down and take the pressure off. We'll be running as a team, at the speed of the slowest runner. The slowest runner won't be me. Because I won't be aiming for a fast time, I can (hopefully) relax and enjoy it. Well, as much as you can enjoy running a marathon on tired legs...

So it's not just "go to New York for a run", it's more "go to New York to do something special and have a once in a lifetime experience", and that's why I'm prepared to put my anti-charity places rants behind me and dive straight into fundraising. However, that means that it's time for a shameless appeal for money.

If you would like to sponsor me, you can do it right now by going to XIII Heroes There's no info on the site yet about the run because it's not being officially announced until the end of the month, but I promise you it's happening. Because it's a general donation link rather than an individual one just for me, if you'd like to help me reach the personal fund raising target I've been set, it's important that you put my name in the notes section when you donate then it can be allocated to me. For those of you who don't know what my name is, cut and paste "I'd like to sponsor Helen Goldthorpe to run the New York Marathon".

There is obviously no obligation on anyone to donate money, or to donate any given amount of money. I'm going into this with my eyes open, and I know that if I fall short of my target I'll have to make up the difference. No matter how much I raise I will be making a sizeable personal donation, (not least because I'd feel guilty about getting other people to pay for me to go to New York for a week without contributing myself) but I'd love that donation to be in addition to the target they've set me rather than part of it. I have to provide the minimum sponsorship in stages by certain dates, so please don't wait until after the race if you're going to sponsor me. The earlier you can contribute, the less you'll have to suffer me begging as 14th September and the deadline for the first installment approaches!

*The status of Amsterdam is unclear. As I've entered and paid for flights etc, I'm going to train as though I'm running both. But if I don't feel right closer to the day, I might drop out of Amsterdam, or at least take it gently, rather than letting the team down in New York.


Blogger JessiferSeabs said...

Aw man.
I'm running the Twin Cities marathon on Octobr 7th in Minneapolis... my first marathon (inspired by you, by the way).

My two best girlfriends from college just informed me that they are running the NYC Marathon... and I was really disappointed that I wasn't running it with them (I don't think I can do both so close together, I'm still a beginner!)

Anyway... good luck, that is awesome. I am so impressed.

11:56 PM  
Blogger Amanda said...

Wow that is exciting news! What an oopurtunity you have in your hands! You are going to achieve great things in your life YP... YOU GO GIRL! You have my support and cheers all the way :) Amanda X

7:46 AM  

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