It is now less than a month until I take on the massive challenge of swimming and running from the island of Arran to Aberdeen. Over 200 miles including four tough open water swims – this has never been attempted. The whole event will be televised in August and is all in aid of the STV Appeal, which goes to Scottish children who are living in situations of poverty. Right now lots of businesses and individuals are getting in touch to help the fundraising. Including the offline and Justgiving, over £10,000 has already been raised. Please GET IN TOUCH THIS WEEK if you know a business that would like to be seen across the STV documentary. Here is my CONTACT.
The physical preparation has been constant since January and has been getting gradually more intense. In truth, there have been big moments of doubt, as I take on my fears with the open water swimming. Having neverbeen a strong swimmer, I am hoping there will be calm conditions, especially for the big 6 mile crossing from the islands of Arran to Bute. Yesterday I was swimming offshore by St Andrews and last weekend was in Loch Tay. Progress has been good, but slow. I would rate swimming as the hardest sport that I have ever tried to learn!
As part of my training, I completed the London Marathon in 3 hours and 32 minutes. The plan was 3:30, so I can’t be too disappointed. It has always been high on my bucket list, but even with high expectations, I was truly astounded by the scale and atmosphere. With over 40,000 runners and the biggest crowds in the events 33 year history, the whole day was an amazing celebration of human endeavour and charity fundraising. Along the course, for the entire 26.1 miles I ran an unbroken gauntlet of shouting, singing, encouraging crowds. I tried to stick to my plan and pace myself, but was immediately swept along in a stream of runners, finishing the first half marathon in 1 hours 36 minutes. The alarm bells should have been ringing, but instead I started dreaming of a 3:15 finish!
Then I got to mile 18 and I hit the famous wall. Looking around, I have never seen so many people pushing their limits. In total, 5000 runners and supporters were reportedly treated on the day by the St Johns Ambulance. Possibly an unsporting mindset, but I took strength from the fact that I could still put one step in front of the other, despite the misery and I plodded on stubbornly.
If you would like to support my Highland Line Challenge for the STV Appeal then the sponsorship page is www.justgiving.com/markbeaumontSTVAppeal
Please also get in touch for about any businesses who you think would like to support.
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