FUNDRAISING: Team Climb London Marathon 2017


On Sunday 23rd April, our 18 amazing Climb Golden Bond holders completed the London Marathon!

The whole day was incredible with an electric atmosphere, and we couldn’t have asked for more from Team Climb.  This fantastic, inspirational group of people spent many months training, overcoming injuries and other challenges, celebrating highs and supporting each other through lows, not to mention the fantastic awareness raising and fundraising efforts!  They showed great camaraderie to each other both before, during and after the event, and have been wonderful ambassadors for Climb.  We were lucky enough to be able to cheer them on as they approached the finish line, and each time we spotted one of our snazzy neon green vests turning into The Mall, we were bursting with pride and emotion!

We caught up with some of our runners who shared their Marathon experience with us…

Stephen Gabbutt

“My 2017 London Marathon experience is a tale of two halves!  A week after I ran the Brighton Marathon my recovery was going really well, so well in fact I decided to do some gardening to relax over the weekend…. this was possibly the biggest mistake of my training to date. On pulling out some weeds I got a nerve trapped in my back and got literally frozen to the spot. The clock said that there only seven days until the next marathon. If movement could be measured I was at 0%

I saw the Doctor the next day, started taking the pain and anti-inflammatory meds, I saw the chiropractor, I started stretching like there was no tomorrow.

By Thursday I was at 75% movement, I decided on the Friday to collect my number from the Excel Convention Centre and if I could by any chance get to the start line on Sunday that I would.

By some running miracle on Sunday morning I was at 84.7%. I decided to put the man pants on and give it a try at least. After finishing Brighton in 3 hours 42 mins, my game plan was just to get around this time.

I started running at 10:04am, at about 8 minute miles, and the going was great, not too hot, not too cold.  After the first 6 miles you hit the Cutty Sark, the amazing London crowd roars and we pushed on. With ‘Stevie’ printed on my chest, just before the halfway point over London bridge the crowd bayed my name so loud my ears started to ring!

Miles 13, 14, 15 went in a blur, and then at mile 16 my leg cramped and my inner thigh went twang, not a little twang, a big “I’m not going to run this off” twang.  How do I know this?  Well for the next 10 miles I’d run, it would twang, I’d walk, run & it twanged.  It was a messy end, but instead of being a complete mess at the end I had a lot more energy than I normally have, so I decided to enjoy the run and twang and play with the crowd, high fiving supporters, cheering charity groups and helping other injured runners with words of kindness, sharing energy gels and bottles of water as we walked and it twanged. It was slow hard work but rewarding feeling I was giving back to the crowd.

I crossed the line in 4 hours 11 mins, about 30 minutes slower than two weeks previously, but full of happiness that I’d finished, that the two-marathon challenge was completed and that between us all we had raised £1,803.64

I’d like to thank all my kind supporters for their donations and to Climb for letting me do this for the third time, in particular to Julie and Joanne at Climb who are both utterly amazing and without their support I would be lost.”

Jess Allamby

“This being my 2nd London Marathon, I didn’t think it would be as special as the first time but how wrong was !?!  Once again I really enjoyed myself.  I was worried I would really struggle this year as I had a horse riding accident 12 months prior to the Marathon where I broke my back and I knew it would give me some trouble. That it did, but I was not failing and stopping. I carried on and this year it took me 6 hours 11 mins but I did it!  To me, time wasn’t important to me, getting over that finish line and doing my little boy, family, friends and Climb proud was the most important factor for me! I am now working towards getting fitter and stronger for the 2018 London Marathon; in tow will be my partner, best friend and her partner!

I’m really grateful to Climb for giving me the opportunity to run for them, I have continued promoting Climb after the Marathon and one big acknowledgement came from a member of staff at Asda Killingbeck in my home town of Leeds. I have had my photo taken with a member of staff holding my medal and Climb vest and now Climb are on the main board in the entrance to the supermarket! I will continue to support them for the rest of my life.  They have been wonderful. Thank you Climb!”

Rachel Lawton

“All I can say is that running the London Marathon, which was my first one, was an emotional and fantastic achievement, which I thoroughly enjoyed!

I took up running 5 years ago, never imagining I would run a marathon having progressed from 10K runs to half marathon’s, before taking the plunge and applying for the London marathon.  I chose Climb as my friend’s (Tanya Brindle) daughter Paige suffers from a Salt Wasting Disease, and I wanted to help and support her by raising funds to find a cure for diseases like this. Running the marathon was a personal challenge for me, however it isn’t as much as a battle as my friend, or people in similar situations go through on a daily basis.

I initially thought I would struggle raising the minimum £1,500, however I found it quite easy as friend’s, colleagues and family donated and I held a fundraising event at work, where I raised over £500. I smashed my original target, with the total now standing at £3,000 which astounds me.  I would just like to thank all those that have donated and supported me through this challenge.

I found the training quite easy, despite the odd injury I picked up in the later stages of my training, but this didn’t hinder me on the actual day as I managed to complete the marathon injury free. Running the London Marathon is by far the biggest and best achievement for me. I thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience, the buzz from the crowds on the actual day and the whole atmosphere was fantastic, as it carries you round the whole 26.2 miles.

I feel so proud to have raised so much money and to have taken part in the London marathon, as it was an amazing experience, and for some crazy reason I have applied for next year….”

Simon Bussell

“My first London Marathon started with a mile long queues for the portaloo’s – yes that’s right, mile long!!  We all then headed in the rough direction of the start line which seemed like the first half of the Marathon! It didn’t take long then before the start, with everyone’s nerves and adrenaline buzzing to begin this arduous task before us. I didn’t know if I’d trained enough or even if I’d make it round in one piece but I was determined and poised ready to dig in.

The first few miles speedily passed me and I was making fairly good progress up until the 7 mile mark where I’d meet my supporters and I certainly needed a little boost at that moment!  They were heard above the whole crowd of thousands waiting for their respective runners. What a pick-up!

I paced my run collecting water at each stop as it was heating up and then saw my lot at the 17 mile point and I was beginning to feel the heavy legs a little but they spurred me on. It was a bit of a blur to the finish after a bit of cramp and trying to push on I finally crossed in 3.39 and shuffled over to collect my bag and fill my face with some calories !!

I had a great day one I’ll never forget and I’m so happy it was for a greater cause. Maybe one day I’ll step off over that line again!  Thanks Climb and all the other runners.”

Emily Cullum

 London Virgin Marathon 2017…

Q)Was it worth it?
A) Definitely.

Q)Was it difficult

Q)Was it worth it?

Physiologically I had the advantage this year of knowing that I completed the marathon last year, so I knew I had 26.2 (or for those of us who like to go that extra mile 28.3,) miles in me! What I hadn’t factored in, was that I was a year older, and although I attempt adulting everyday, my legs soon let me know that my body certainly isn’t as young as my mind. Training was going really well until I decided that I was going to be the next Paula Radcliffe! I was determined to smash last years time, in hindsight, I should have just been content with getting round again…but oh no, Mrs Competitive AKA Mrs Peter Pan, ended up on crutches 8 weeks before the 23rd April, and was unable to run until 4 weeks before the day.  Cycling was okay, so I was able to maintain a level of fitness. I quickly hated my bike, having spent 4hrs on it cycling 60 miles in the rain without a break! I thought road bikes were notorious for their frailty, and contracting terminal punctures. No such luck, mine just kept soldiering on.

I very nearly threw the towel in, and just as I was about to ring Climb and say that I just wasn’t fit or sound enough, Louis was put on the liver transplant list. It would have be churlish of me to quit now, especially when he and his family keep up this extraordinary and exceptionally brave fight. So I had a quick meeting with myself about being a complete wimp, and soon started to dislike my physio as much as I did my bike. It amazed my how such a mild mannered slip of a girl could inflict such pain!  But, thanks to Louis bravery, an invincible bike, determined friend (coach), and the evil physio, I got there!

Race day! Now this wasn’t straight forward either! No trains were running from Huntingdon, so we booked tickets from Stevenage, and feeling buoyant we made our way to platform 3. A few moments later, a very shaky voice came over the tannoy system;
“Er, I know this might ruin everyone’s day, but the 7.10 to Kings Cross is now not running due to engineering issues, and nor is the 7.40.”
The platform just fell silent and I was surrounded by disbelief and panic!

We made a plan to hotfoot it to Welwyn Garden City and catch the train from there. We caught the train, but it didn’t leave the platform for 30 mins, and on arriving at Kings Cross had 50 mins to get to the start line…tensions were running high!

I made it just in the nick of time!

The marathon again was a fabulous experience, and made even better this year by meeting some fellow Climb runners along the route. I managed to see Louis three times, and was rewarded with a rare cuddle from him, for finishing.

Q)Will I do it again?
A)Definitely, if Climb will have me back.

Time is a great healer, I have forgiven both the bike and physio!

Top Marathon tip, don’t bother with recovery runs, but instead book two weeks holiday in Mexico the day after the marathon! With the help of my new friend tequila, there were no post marathon aches and pains!

Thank you so much Team Climb.  We are truly humbled that you undertook this challenge, and hope the euphoria lasted much longer than the aching legs!