62/80 – Less Than Six Weeks to Go!

Less than six weeks to go and I already have 14 people confirmed to run with me for the final run of the challenge in Bath on 28th July.

Yesterday marked 40 half-marathons since I broke my femur in November, and I’m delighted to have been able to get back so soon after such a serious injury! Really looking forward to the next 18 runs of the challenge and celebrating with lots of people I have met along the way for the final event.

A summary of the past few weeks:

52/80 – IGUN School Run Calverley [22nd May]

I competed in the It’s Grim Up North Calverley School race and added 11.1km before the start to make it up to a half-marathon. My first sprint finish of the challenge as someone raced me to the finish line and I managed to hold on!

53/80 – Sunny Friday Evening [24th May]

A lovely sunny evening ahead of my track half-marathon on the Sunday!

54/80 – Leigh Track Half-marathon [26th May]

53 laps around a track on a rainy Sunday morning! I was delighted to get my new PB of 1:39:33. This was also my fifth half-marathon in 11 days.

Leigh Track Half Marathon Sean McGibney

55/80 – The End of Month Six [30th April]

The end of month six saw me reach 55 runs towards my target of 80 half-marathons in eight months. I completed this run around Pontefract Racecourse.

56/80 – Sniffly Saturday [1st June]

I had a cold, so thought I’d try to run it off! A run around Pontefract Racecourse again, followed by pizza and the Champions League final. Needed a few days’ rest after this one, as I wasn’t feeling too sharp.

57/80 – Rugby Challenge by Big Bear Events [6th June]

(Almost) recovered from my cold, I managed a half-marathon distance at Rugby Challenge. The Big Bear events are always brilliantly organised and the routes are great. Had a lingering cough, so was hoping I’d be able to shake it by Settle Trail Half-marathon on the Sunday.

58/80 – Settle Saunter [9th June]

Trails in the Yorkshire Dales with my friend Annabel. We made the mistake of not looking up the route beforehand – it was a lot hillier than we realised it would be! Amazing scenery and a pie and pea supper to finish. Awesome event!

Settle Half Marathon

59/80 – Treadmill Half [11th June]

A treadmill half-marathon to make up for the run I missed when I was ill the week before.

60/80 – Solo Trails [12th June]

My trail race was cancelled this evening due to flooding, so I headed out on the trails alone between Leeds and Bradford. A rainy run, with great scenery.

61/80 – IGUN Summer Canal Canter with Lucy [15th June]

Another brilliant It’s Grim Up North Event. The rain managed to hold out and as always there was cake, chocolate and beer (or cider) waiting at the finish!

62/80 – Roundhay and Out [17th June]

My 40th half-marathon since my injury was another rainy run to Roundhay Park in Leeds and out. 18 to go!

Sean McGibney Running

If anybody else is interested in running the final event of the challenge in Bath on 28th July, please get in touch with me!

51/80 – London Marathon and the Rest!

I can’t believe London was only just over three weeks ago, as I’ve managed to fit in another eight half-marathon distances since. My running aside, it was an absolutely incredible day and it was great to see so many people in Dementia Revolution colours and the support stations were beyond words.

In total, the crew managed to raise over £4 million for dementia research, which is amazing. I would like to pass my thanks on to all of the charity organisers, volunteers who cheered us on, all of the other runners, and anybody else who was involved in making it such a special day.

43/80 – London Marathon [28th April]

I got caught up in the atmosphere and running with my pal David for the first half of London, which I completed in around 1hr 50mins (far too fast for somebody who had a broken leg less than six months ago and hadn’t had time to properly train up to marathon distance. At 14 miles, I was sick and never recovered. I managed to struggle through to the end and was delighted to just have finished.

I have applied to run London again next year, as I would like an opportunity to learn from the experience and pace myself a little more sensibly.

Dementia Revolution Sean McGibney

44/80 – Sunny Saturday Morning [4th May]

I gave myself a few days’ rest after London, but didn’t want to have too long out as I have 37 runs to complete over the next three months. A sunny Saturday morning was a nice way to ease myself back in, including 5km at the Pontefract parkrun.

45/80 – Rainy Bank Holiday [6th May]

What’s a bank holiday if not for running?! Rain didn’t dampen play as I ran with Lucy and the Sweatshop Runners in Castleford for part of the run.

46/80 – Cannon Hall Dash [8th May]

It’s Grim Up North Running Evening Series I. Beautiful course, with slippery trails. This was the first in a series of 3 evening 10-mile races. I have to add 3.1 miles at the start to make them up to half-marathon distances!

Sean McGibney It's Grim Up North

47/80 – Birthday Morning [10th May]

To celebrate my birthday morning, I ran a treadmill half to try out my new running shoes ahead of Leeds Half Marathon on the Sunday. They are the same brand and model I ran in two years ago, but I accidentally threw into the bin after just a few weeks… doh!

48/80 – Leeds Half with Lucy [12th May]

Lucy’s first half marathon and a sprint finish at the end! The Leeds course is great – challenging for the first 10km or so with hills, then a sustained down-hill/flat until the finish in town.

Sean McGibney Lucy

49/80 – Leeds Early Morning [15th May]

I set off just after sun-rise (hooray for summer time) to complete run 49 around Roundhay Park (and out) in Leeds before work.

50/80 – Trans Penning Trail [17th May]

A new trail to complete the half century. 30 runs to go, with 38% of my goal fundraising still to raise… the race is on!

51/80 – Pontefract Racecourse [20th May]

A steady evening around Pontefract Racecourse last night to bring up run 51 of the challenge. My legs were feeling quite tired, but I was glad that I went out and did it.

Next up, events on Wednesday and Sunday this week.

Thank you so much to everybody who has donated so far! If anybody would like to contribute, all of the money goes to funding vital research into dementia.

Donate.

42/80 – It’s London Marathon Week!

I’ve been a little off the pace with updating the blog in the past weeks due to work commitments and some days in the sun in Croatia. I’m currently tapering for London Marathon, which is this Sunday. It feels strange to not have any half-marathon distance runs planned for these days and it will leave me with a few to catch up after the event, but more than sensible to rest my legs ahead of the big day.

An update on the past 7 runs…

36/80 – Temple Newsam Daffodil Dash [30th March]

Another run in the sun! A hilly, tough course, but as with all Grim Up North events there was plenty of home-made cake and chocolate at the finish to be worth the struggle!

37/80 – Treadmill Half Before Flight [1st April]

The day before I set off to Seattle for a work conference, I ran a treadmill half-marathon distance in Reading before heading to the airport. This was the first treadmill distance of the challenge and I forgot my headphones… much prefer running outside!

38/80 – Seattle, Washington [4th April]

Seattle Sean McGibney 80in8

One day to adjust for jet-lag and then I went out around the conference location in Seattle to explore and soak up the sun. The “no jay-walking” rules in America meant it was a little more stop-start than usual, but I enjoyed the run nonetheless.

39/80 – Seattle Treadmill [7th April]

The routes around the conference centre weren’t the best for running (uneven pavements and lots of traffic lights!), so I completed another half-marathon distance on the treadmill before heading home. A huge thank you to the staff at Hilton Hotel in Seatac for allowing me to use the gym.

40/80 – Half Way! [11th April]

On 11th April I ran around Roundhay Park in Leeds to complete the half-way point of the challenge. It feels like a great achievement to get this far after the leg-break after month two, and I can’t wait for the final three months coming after London!

41/80 – Sunny Croatia [16th April]

Croatia Sean McGIbney 80in8

A week’s holiday in Croatia meant that I was able to squeeze in two runs along the coast in Croatia. The scenery was brilliant and I really enjoyed the run.

42/80 – Sunrise in Croatia [18th April]

An early start the day before heading home, I was up at sunrise and finished in time for breakfast. Time to taper…

I will update the blog post-London. I’m really looking forward to meeting the other Dementia Revolution [DR] runners this weekend. DR are on track to raise over £3.5mil for dementia research through this year’s marathon efforts. It’s brilliant to be part of such a deserving and valuable cause.

Thank you for all of the donations so far! You can donate here.

35/80 – Heavy Legs, Back on Track!

It’s been a brilliant (and busy!) few weeks of running and I’m well back into the swing of things. A busy April with work commitments, holiday, and London Marathon means that I have been trying to fit as many runs in as possible to ease the strain on the final months of the challenge (May-July). I have a target list for runs in the final months of the challenge now, so will update the page as soon as I have the events confirmed.

An update…

31/80 – Slow Leeds [14th March]

Tired legs after a busy week of running the week before, I set off for a slow evening half around Leeds.

32/80 – Big Bear Challenge [19th March]

I  had a great time running the Big Bear Challenge by Big Bear Events last week. It’s a 6-hour lapped event in which you can run as many laps as you choose around Pitsford Reservoir and country park.  The event was brilliantly organised and had a really supportive atmosphere.  I’ll definitely be back for another Big Bear event in the final three months of the challenge. I ran 6 laps which is around 19 miles – perfect prep for London!

Sean McGibney Big Bear Events

33/80 – Trail / Fell Half in Peak District with Duncan [21st March]

I ran with my friend Duncan around the Peak District last Thursday. My first time running on proper fells / trails in fell running shoes and I had an amazing day. Duncan is a survival coach with North Ridge Adventure and is going to take me back out in the summer to learn navigation so I can plan my own routes. Can’t wait to get back out  in the countryside, opened my eyes to a completely new side of running!

Duncan Clarke Sean McGibney

34/80 – Leeds Liverpool Canal [24th March]

Another great It’s Grim Up North event. I ran with Ollie and Lance who were both competing in their first half marathons. An out and back route along the Leeds-Liverpool canal and a sunny(ish) day to boot!

35/80 – Heavy Legs Around Leeds [26th March]

I headed out for a solo run around Leeds last night after a busy day at work. My legs felt heavy after 4 in 8 days, so I will be planning a few rest days now until the next Grim event in Temple Newsam this Saturday.

Less than 5 weeks to London Marathon! I am happy to  have completed a 19-mile run last week in preparation and although I’m not going to set the world alight with my time,  I’m really looking forward to London.

Then the final three months of the challenge where I will need to average 12 halfs each month. Bring it on!

Thank you so much to everybody who has donated so far!  Donate here.

30/80 – Draycote Water Half

An update…

10km with Dave [27th February]

I had originally planned to run a half-marathon distance and meet up with Dave for the last 10km, but bad traffic put a stop to that. We met at the start of Wakefield Thornes parkrun. Dave is over from Australia visting his Mum who has dementia and it was great to meet up and share stories over a slow run in the dark around Thornes Park and Pugneys Country Park.

28/80 [3rd March] Warwick Half Marathon

I met up with Steve and Dr Chris for the first time since my injury and Chris helped to pace me to my first sub 2-hour half-marathon since returning from my broken femur. We finished in sub 1:50. It feels great to be back and to already be posting times comparable to where I was before the injury.

Sean McGibney, Steve, Dr Chris

29/80 [7th March] Steady, Hilly Morning

I took myself out before work last Thursday for a run around Meanwood Park and Headingley in Leeds. It’s a real benefit for running living in Leeds, as it’s impossible to avoid hills. A hilly, steady morning to add another to the total.

30/80 [10th March] Draycote Water Half

A wet and windy (45mph) morning around Draycote Water. I am practicing negative splits which means you get faster as the run progresses. I was happy to start at a steady 5:30/km, increasing to 4:50/km average for the last 5km, and finishing in just over 1:50. This run ended up being 22.5km, as the registration area was a while from the start line. I didn’t fancy walking in the cold so jogged to the start!

Next  up is a run with a friend tomorrow in Leeds before a 6-hour event next week with Big Bear Events which I’m really looking forward to. I’m going to use this as a training run for London Marathon, which is now less than 7 weeks away!

A busy few weeks (and months) of running ahead, and it’s great to be back!

Thank you to everybody who has donated so far, I’m delighted to be at just over £1,600 raised already, with 4.5 months left in the challenge.

Donation link.

27/80 – Slaithwaite (“Slawit”) Slog

My leg has been feeling stronger with each run and I have been working in the gym on off-days. I’m hoping to get back under the two-hour half-marathon mark in the coming weeks and then will work on bringing my time down further in the lead-up to London!

25/80 [15th February] Winter Sun

15 weeks since surgery, my legs felt much stronger on this run. I went on the Meanwood Valley Trail to Eccup Resevoir and Golden Acre Park.

26/80 [19th February] Roundhay and Out with Mick

Sean + Mick

Last Tuesday, I met fireman Mick after his night-shift. Mick reached out after my injury to say that we would run together when I get back, so it was great to link up for a run around Roundhay and out. We talked all things life, work, and dementia. We’ll be running together again in the coming months – hopefully when I’m running a bit quicker…!

27/80 [23rd February] Slaithwaite (“Slawit”) Slog by It’s Grim Up North

Another brilliant event by the Grim Team. We ran along the canal path from Slaithwaite out to Huddersfield and Marsden. I ran the whole route with Andy who left the military a few years back and now works in construction health and safety. As always with Grim events, there was an awesome medal (below), chocolate and home-made cake at the finish line.

52898392_332437890730891_1553645616930750464_n

This is the most miles I have done in a week since my injury, so I am happy with how my leg held up and I can feel my muscles strengthening again. Roll on the next few weeks and London Marathon in nine weeks!

Thank you very much to Lisa and the rest of the volunteer team at Wakefield Thornes parkrun who welcomed me to run a Dementia Revolution takeover on 16th February. It was great to talk to all participants just before the start and three people came up to talk to me about their own experience of dementia.

Next up is a run tomorrow with Dave who I met recently at the Dementia Revolution parkrun takeover. Dave is over from Australia visting his mother, who has dementia. He will join me for 10km of a half-marathon distance.

24/80 – Clyde Walkway and I’m Back!

After 12 weeks without running post-broken femur surgery, I was finally able to do some light miles on the treadmill. I had been doing 3+ hours of exercise each day since leaving hospital – a combination of rehab physio exercises, swimming and cycling. My fitness has definitely decreased, but the time I was able to dedicate to recovery has certainly helped me get back on the road faster and maintain a base level of fitness on which to build now I’m back.

I have restarted the clock on the challenge from the beginning of February, starting the final six months of the challenge.

I’d like to say a huge thank you to everybody who has helped and supported me through the injury – I know I wouldn’t have been able to get back on the road so quickly without all of your help!

There’s now less than 11 weeks to London Marathon!

23/80 [2nd February] Roundhay Park

I chose Roundhay for my first half marathon distance back because of the softer ground which lessened the impact on my leg. I took the pace very steady and was really happy that there was no pain or discomfort, although both of my legs are noticeably weaker and I’ll have to work to get back to the level of fitness I was at before the injury.

I plan to take the next few weeks a lot easier in terms of miles than I was doing before I broke my leg, so that I can build my strength back up in the gym and also include some shorter runs. I am also aware that with London just around the corner, I am going to have to do some longer runs to build up distance ahead of the marathon.

24/80 [10th February] The Clyde Walkway with Derek

I ran with Derek this weekend who I met at the Great Scottish Run back in September. Derek has a very personal relationship with dementia and it was great to meet and catch up over some muddy hills!

Derek Millar and Sean McGibney

The Clyde Walkway is a 40-mile footpath that runs from Glasgow to New Lanark. The scenery was breaktaking and the elevation was a good test for my legs. We managed to see some waterfalls and follow the river through Lanark and New Lanark. I’d suggest anybody who visits the area to run or walk a section of the route, although I was fortunate to have such a good guide and route-planner in Derek!

We ran just over 16 miles (~26km), so this run is my first stepping up distance ahead of London Marathon.

Sean McGibney Clyde Walkway

This weekend some friends and I are running a Parkrun takeover in Wakefield to spread the word of Dementia Revolution and the great work they are doing to raise awareness and some much needed funds for research.

I have also planned all of my official runs up to London, which can be found on the website. If anybody would like to join me for a run, please get in touch here or on social media.

Thank you also to everybody who has donated so far and I’m going to be pushing on with the fundraising activities over the next few months!

If you would like to donate to Dementia Revolution, please click here.