Posts Tagged ‘London Marathon’

Local ladies get set to run London Marathon

Posted on Friday 11th April 2014 at 8:14 pm by SH (Editor)

Sole Sisters RC members entered in the 2014 London Marathon.

This Sunday (13th April), twelve local women from the Sole Sisters running club will be lining up to run the London Marathon, five of them for the very first time.

Penny Greenwood, Liz Naude, Linda Millward, Amy Seymour, Rebecca Mitchell, and Kate Stuart will be joined by first-time marathon runners, Helen Smith, Jo Radford, Lisa Morris, Leona Mills, Michelle Lord and Sam Carpenter.

Kate Stuart

Local sports & remedial massage therapist Kate described herself as being a reluctant runner or a “should run” kind of runner before she discovered Sole Sisters Running Club. Christmas Eve 2011 she went along for her first run with the group where she was welcomed with much kindness, support and encouragement. Shortly after this she did the London Marathon in April 2012 and has since become a coach at the club. This year she will be running London for the 3rd time for Heart UK in memory of her dad John Baker.

Penny Greenwood

Penny ran her first marathon in 2010 to raise money for St Peter’s Hospice who had cared for her mother during her final year. At age 50 her mother turned her life around, passed a degree in chiropody and started her own business which she loved doing for over 20 years. She told Penny: “Do whatever you love for as long as you can.” Penny runs because she loves it and the amazing group of Sole Sisters that she runs with. Penny says: “We share everything – it is our outlet for life.” To date she has raised over £4,000 for St Peter’s and will continue for as long as she can.

More: Profiles of Liz Naude and Leona Mills »

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Tony Hardy’s London Marathon

Posted on Friday 26th April 2013 at 6:50 am by Nikki Hallur

Tony Hardy, marathon runner.

We caught up with marathon runner, Tony Hardy, this week to find out about his experience at the London Marathon. Last year he completed the marathon for the first time, and this year he’s taken on the extra challenge of signing up for both the London and Berlin marathons. All of Tony’s efforts are going towards raising money for Mind, a charity that deals with mental health issues – something that Tony believes in strongly due to his own personal battle against depression.

This year, Tony faced a few unanticipated challenges in the few weeks preceding the marathon. Last time I spoke to him, his training had been progressing well. A month before the marathon date, however, Tony had a hamstring and ankle injury. With the support of physiotherapists at the Willow Brook Clinic, Tony felt that he had recovered completely. He said he was extremely grateful to James and Hannah at the Clinic, because “they fixed everything’ and ‘got me to the start line”.

Tony recalls that he was “absolutely fine until mile 11”. It was at 8 miles that he saw a group of Mind supporters which gave him a fantastic boost. The group had met up before the race, and the CEO of the organisation, Paul Farmer, was there during the reception later on to acknowledge all the runners who were fundraising for Mind. With the added boost from the Mind supporters during the marathon, as well as the amazing feeling of treading on Tower Bridge, Tony continued strong until mile 11, but after mile 13 he found he could only walk. He kept going until mile 19, after which he couldn’t continue walking.

Tony said there was the same sense of camaraderie and euphoria in participating as there had been last year, and he is determined to come back fitter and stronger for the Berlin Marathon in a few months’ time. He said he is also planning some “fundraising events in Bradley Stoke over the summer”.

Tony’s fundraising page is at if you would like to donate. If you would like to know more about Tony’s charity, Mind, you can visit

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Two marathons at 50 for local fundraiser Tony

Posted on Thursday 14th March 2013 at 6:50 am by Nikki Hallur

Tony Hardy competes in the 2012 London Marathon.

Tony Hardy is a Systems Engineering Consultant who has lived in Bradley Stoke since 2006. Last year he ran the London Marathon for the first time, raising £3,000 for Mind. This year, he is running twice the distance. He’ll be running his second London Marathon on 21st April and then the Berlin Marathon on 29th September. Each marathon is 26.2 miles, which makes more than 52 miles in total. As Tony will be turning 50 this year, he has named his fundraising page ’52 at 50’.

Following a 16-week training programme this year, Tony says he feels ‘in the zone’ but admits that he wasn’t always so fit. He started running as a hobby five years ago, and found it helped him immensely as a complimentary therapy towards dealing with depression. He said that ‘we’re lucky in this area’ because we have a community mental health team, but some areas have no mental health provisions. Battling with depression made Tony realise the value of organisations such as Mind, the charity he is fundraising for. Mind not only helps people directly through phone lines, it also does a lot of campaigning to raise awareness about mental health.

Last year’s experience of finishing the marathon left Tony emotional: he said, ‘It was such a great sense of achievement, I actually burst into tears.’ Admittedly it also ‘hurt a lot’ but Tony feels he’s even fitter this year because he is building on previous training (Tony’s time last year was 5:03:19). He says the inspiration for doing the first marathon came from seeing one of his friends doing it, which made him think, ‘If he can do it, so can I’. For this year, he says, ‘I want to prove that I can do it at 50 … and raise even more money in the process.’

Visit Tony’s fundraising page:

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MP to tackle London Marathon in aid of children’s charity

Posted on Friday 20th April 2012 at 4:23 pm by SH (Editor)

Jack Lopresti MP, an entrant in the 2012 London Marathon.

Jack Lopresti, MP for Filton and Bradley Stoke, is bracing himself for a 26.2 mile challenge when he tackles the Virgin London Marathon this weekend.

Mr Lopresti, who admits he is “not really built for running”, has been undergoing a gruelling training schedule since Christmas to gear up for Sunday’s race.

The MP  will be joining over 35,000 other runners at the world’s biggest marathon to raise money for Action for Children, which works with the most disadvantaged youngsters.

Mr Lopresti, who is setting his target inside five hours, said:

“I want to get round, and I want to enjoy it. That’s the main thing.”

The Conservative MP will be toeing the line alongside Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls and six other parliamentarians.

Mr Lopresti has been a regular competitor in the Bradley Stoke 10k and the Bristol Half Marathon, but this will be the first time he steps up to the full marathon distance.

His training routine has involved running at 6am and over distances of up to 20 miles.

More: Bradley Stoke woman running to raise money for HEART UK »

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