Afternoon everyone. Just a quickie to say Merry Christmas to you all, and thanks for all that have taken the time to read this little blog over the year, and even more to those that have sponsored me for this month’s Marcothon challenge. I’m so incredibly humbled that thanks to all you lot I’m now approaching the £500 target, and this will make a tremendous difference to help the Booth Centre support those with nothing this Christmas. So thank you so much – it really means a lot to me and no doubt to them as well.

To update you on the challenge so far, with potentially the two worst days still to come (tomorrow and Boxing Day), I’m happy to announce that despite all the festive commitments, after work drinks, parties and whatnot, I am still going strong now with 23 consecutive days successfully completed and a total of nearly 70 miles now in the bank for December. The first time in my life that I have run more than (I think) seven days in a row so that’s already a bit of an achievement. No rest days, no excuses if I’ve accidentally had one too many the night before, just back out again to log another three miles and tick off another day.

It’s been a bit of a struggle at times I’ll be honest, but when I look at the absolute legend that is Ron Hill’s achievements, who hit 50 years of consecutive daily running this week, I guess it’s pretty small beer really. Nevertheless, there’s been a few challenges along the way, mostly weather related (it’s grim up North etc etc), but also a couple of proper meaty hangovers in the past fortnight and a stinking cold in the opening week or so (and I’m hardly ever ill, so not sure what that was all about). Not to mention the fact that I cycle to and from work every day; only a ten mile or so round trip, but it all adds up. KaputThere’s light at the end of the tunnel now though, as I enter the final week, and with my bike unexpectedly falling to bits on Thursday I’m back on feet only for the time being, so it’s got a bit easier on that front too.

Oh, and thanks to the second part of the challenge my face also looks absolutely ridiculous. There’s been plenty of comments from friends, family and work colleagues as the ginger “iron filings” gradually sprout through, and I actually had to ask a chap I work with about shaving last week as I have no idea how to get this off without hurting myself once it’s all finished. I have never had such a conversation in my 33 years on this earth so I suppose that’s another achievement for the month. I have finally become a man.

I hope you all have a fantastic festive period anyway, and I look forward to boring you all again in 2015 with tales of sweaty woe. I have a few interesting ideas up my sleeve which should give me some material to do just that, but for now I just wanted to say thanks again for all your support over this year, through the bleakness of 22 mile runs in hurricanes and torrential rain in March, all the way to the unexpected run of 10k successes from May to October. And now, the final miles of my final challenge of the year and then we can do it all again sometime. Thanks for being a part of it.

If you’d like to donate you can visit my fundraising page at
justgiving.com/marcothon2014

Or text GUMP81 followed by your amount (e.g. £5) to 70070