MNDAD@70

#MNDAD@70 Update 2

I always knew that finding 70 raffles for the #MNDAD@70 was going to be a big ask, especially when I added a time limit of a year to the challenge. (If you are not sure what #MNDAD@70 read about it here)

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What’s happened in #MNDAD@70 so far?

So far I have managed a total of 31 different raffles and raised just over £800 for Motor Neurone Disease Association. (If you don’t know why I raise money for this charity, please read here.)

I have been reflecting on #MNDAD@70 of late and realised that I have put an end date for the challenge of 30/1/20 so that it was completed in one year, but why? Well, yes it was to celebrate what should have been my dad’s 70th year, but really does it have to have a time limit? I am now thinking NO!

Why take on #MNDAD@70?

Another reason for taking on the #MNDAD@70 challenge was to raise as much money for the MNDA. There is still NO cure for this horrible disease! People are still being diagnosed with this death trap of a disease, so the more money and awareness I can raise, the better. The awareness and the money could make the difference. So I set out to do 70 raffles and that is exactly what I am going to do. Regardless of how long it takes me to do it.

My dad and me.

How can you get involved?

I have been overwhelmed by the number of people that have repeatedly got involved and donated to #MNDAD@70. I appreciate that not all the raffle prizes are going to appeal to everyone, and not everyone has the funds to keep donating, but you can still get involved.

Please keep sharing the raffles and #MNDAD@70 content. Your connections may want to enter, or you may just remind someone to enter. If you have got involved or won something, please share using the #MNDAD70 and tag me in too.

More people that are aware and following/using the #MNDAD70, the more likely companies are to get involved, providing some more amazing prizes. You see lots of people offering things on social media, but your not always sure that they can be trusted. So winners, please share. I really think it will help people trust this challenge if they see winning prizes.

If you have any ideas of how to promote the challenge more, suggestions for prizes, or any words of wisdom, please feel free to contact me, or add a comment below.

Dennis Murphy (My dad!)

NO FINISH LINE UNTIL THERE IS A CURE

RUNMND EST.2014

Useful Links

MNDAD@70 Update…

So we are now two and a half months in to my crazy year of raffles. SEVENTY didn’t seem unachievable, but it is daunting. We are now on raffle number 14, and I think unachievable am already a little bit behind schedule. I think I worked it out that I need to run one every 5 days to fit in all 70 in one year, but I am just over-lapping some. If you need reminding why I am doing this, please read here.

My Dad

I think one of the things that I am finding the hardest is knowing how to publicise it and how often to share it. I don’t want to spam people with it, but then I also know of raffles that have been missed by people. How do you find the balance? Any suggestions on best platforms to share the raffles on?

I have been really fortunate with brands getting involved and donating prizes, and I will be eternally grateful to them. Since I started this I have raised over £300 for the Motor Neurone Disease Association which is amazing, so thank you to Runr, Run Mummy Run, Hygge Bands, Sports Direct Running, Run Ink Design, Provis Sports, Halo Headbands, Pepper Jar Creations, Time 4 Nutrition, Spibelt, Hang Tidy, and Tina’s Massage.

I obviously have a long way to go, so if anyone is aware of any companies that may want to get involved please get in touch. Motor Neurone Disease still has no cure, and #ThereIsNoFinishLineUntilThereIsACure.

Please share this post and make sure you let all your friends know about MNDAD@70. Make sure you follow me on all social media channels to make sure you don’t miss out on any of the great prizes still to come.

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#MNDAD70

It’s been a while since I last blogged, but as it’s half term, so I thought I’d post! If you follow me on social media, you will have seen the hashtag #MNDAD70, and hopefully you will know what it is about. But just in case this blog reaches people that are not following me, let me explain.

So my dad died in 2010 of Motor Neurone Disease. – for those that are not sure what this is, if I said Ice Bucket Challenge or Stephen Hawkins, you probably have heard of it at some point. It is the most horrendous disease that attacks the motor neurones.

I still find it heart breaking that there is no cure. I remember my dad taking part in trials to help find a cure, yet we are 9 years on from his death and people are still being diagnosed with this, knowing that they will never be cured!

January 30th 2019, should have been my fathers 70th birthday, so I had this crazy idea that to celebrate his life and raise funds and awareness, in hope that one day a cure would be found, I would try to run 70 raffles throughout the year.

I have been fundraising for the Motor Neurone Disease Association ever since my dad died, but I didn’t want to just ask people for money again, so I thought I would run raffles, so donators had a chance of getting something from it. I have been fortunate that Runr, Run Mummy Run, Hygge Bands, Sports Direct Running, Proviz, Halo headbands, Pepper Jar Creations, and Time 4 Nutrition have all donated prizes so far.

SEVENTY is a massive number, and I know that it is going to be hard work to get that many prizes, but I will keep going, just like my dad did. I would love to see a cure in my lifetime, and know that I played a little part in helping, but mostly to know that anyone who is diagnosed has a chance to fight and be cured.

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My #flashbackfriday has to be a photo of my last holiday with my dad – a week before he died of #MND . I have had many new followers recently, so I thought I’d share my reason for getting into running. . I played basketball for many years, so I always ran to keep fit for my sport. . In 2009, my dad was diagnosed with #motorneuronedisease on the 9th Nov – I’ll never forget as it was my birthday! . I had read a bit about it, but didn’t know what to expect really. My dad deteriorated pretty rapidly, he lost his ability to walk, and talk, but never lost his smile and kind ways. . My dad died 8 months after being diagnosed, and as hard as it is for all of my family and friends, it was the best thing for him. This disease is so cruel and the less he had to suffer the better. . There isn’t a day that goes by when I don’t miss him. He missed my wedding, meeting my little girl and being her granddad! . I had run a half marathon when my dad was alive, but promised him I would run a 16 mile race to raise money for #MNDA . I didn’t make the 16 mile run as I fell pregnant, but I knew I wanted to raise money and keep my promise to my dad. . I finally ran @londonmarathon in 2014 and raised money. It was there that I became part of the amazing @run.mnd group. . All have been touched by #MND and run to raise money and awareness for #MNDA . June is #mndawareness month, and we will all keeping ruining in hope that one day there will be a cure for this horrendous disease. . #nofinishlineuntilthereisacure #runmnd #mnda #runnersofinstagram #runstagram #mydad❤️ #Run #runners #instarunners #runmummyrun #ukrunchat #mndawarenessmonth

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Even if the prize that is offered doesn’t interest you, please spread the word about the raffles, as the more people that know about it, that’s more people that are aware of MNDA, and potentially more money raised.

If anyone is aware of any businesses that may be able to donate prizes to my 70, please comment below, or email.

www.justgiving.com/dennismurphy1949

 

Race Recap-Silverstone Half 2017; The agony of my very first DNF!

After running Brighton Half two weeks ago (Read about it here) I picked up a niggle, so knew that this race was always going to be touch-and-go. In between Brighton and Silverstone, I got the news about the New York Marathon, so that got me super motivated, hence not really wanting to DNS this race.

Date: Sunday 12th March 2017

Time: Noon

Weather: Heavy rain had been predicted all week, but we were actually very lucky, as it drizzled at most and when the sun came out it was actually quite warm.

Course: I had remember from last year, that this is not a course that I liked! The weaving  around the track was quite disorientating and with no spectators for most of the course, it is eerily quiet!

My race: So, as you have probably gathered from the title of this post, this race wasn’t one of my finest! I have been struggling with a pulling on the outside of my left knee. I knew this was due to my tight hamstrings, and went to have a sports massage last Wednesday. Oh my, the pain was indescribable! I had to bite my jumper to stop myself screaming! I had hoped that the pain was going to be worth it, as it would let me run on Sunday. I ran Thursday night at club, and although not totally comfortable, I did feel I was on the mend!

I was still unsure as to whether to run or not, even up to an hour before the start. But so many of my RunMND group were running it, and I didn’t want to miss out! I hadn’t had any discomfort for a day or two, so thought I was possibly fixed!

When we started, I wasn’t totally comfortable, but was unsure if it was going to be something that as I warmed up more, would just ease. There were a large group of us running together, and we were carrying a huge banner, so I knew the pace was going to remain reasonable, so I just carried on. I ran along, chatting and really enjoying myself. Around 4 miles I felt so comfortable and remember thinking how much I was enjoying running with my friends! The course is weird and so quiet, I remember hating it last year, but running with people made it so much more fun.

I really must stop the funny crazy faces during a race hehe

As we approached 5 miles, I started to get twinges in the back of my knee/top of calf. I carried on for another 100 metres, but I just remembered so many people telling me not to injure myself more, so quickly made the decision to stop. I tried to stretch , but the pain now was so much worse, putting weight on my left leg was not comfortable. I asked a marshal how to get back to the start, and was told I would just have to walk the next eight miles, or wait until the race was over and someone would come and collect me! As you can imagine, I chose the walking option. My knee is weird as one step will be VERY painful, and then the next nothing! I found walking eased it a bit, and I saw another group of RunMND runners just behind so waited for them. If I was going to be run/walking, I wanted to do it with more friends. I managed another 2 miles, but quickly spotted a short cut back to the start/finish area. Although, I desperately wanted to finish the race, my sensible head took over and I quit the race. I limped back to the finish area, and that was that! No medal for me!

Lesson learned: I desperately need to do strength work to complement my running. The imbalances I have, are only going to get worse as I start to up the mileage!

Pros

  • Running with such a big team is amazing. There were so many MNDA runners on the course, it was fun.
  • Running with a HUGE banners gets lots of attention, which equals greater awareness for MNDA
  • The organisation for the race was awesome. The baggage area in particular were SO efficient and helpful.

Cons

  • I really need to look at race maps. When I stopped at mile 5, and asked the direction back to the start/finish area, no one seemed to know!
  • Not finishing = no medal! Although I had to go through to the finishers area, to take back my timing chip, I could have easily picked up a race bag, but I didn’t!
  • I’m not a fan of a midday start. I had a huge breakfast, but just as the race was starting, I was so hungry!
  • BEING INJURED!

The group of runners that are part of RunMND are just amazing. Everyone stayed and cheered all the runners over the finish line. Loosing my dad to MND was one of the hardest things I have ever experienced, but through this experience I have met the most amazing bunch of people.

“There is no finish line, until there is a cure”

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Endure 24 2016 – Race Recap

Screen Shot 2016-06-17 at 20.10.08I honestly do not know where to start with this race report, apart from saying this race is EPIC! I’m not sure my words are really going to be able to capture the entire weekend, so expect lots of pictures!

If you have never heard of it before the basics are; the race starts at 12 noon on the Saturday and finishes at 12 noon on the Sunday. You can run as a solo, in teams of 3-5 people, or teams of 6-8. The aim is to complete as many laps as you can in the 24 hours. The laps are 5 miles of mixed terrain, through Wasing Woods. There are two fields to camp in, and the organisers advertise this as the Glastonbury for Runners.

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The elevation map from 1 lap.

So, I do NOT like running off-road, I am not a fan of camping, and I’m not the greatest without sleep! So why did I enter this race? Well, all I can say in Run MND! That is all! I have met the most amazing group of people through this group, and they sign up to crazy races, and I just go with the flow! We are all passionate about supporting the Motor Neurone Disease Association, and helping raise funds to find a cure for this awful disease, so an event like this helps us to raise awareness and to get together too.

Run MND had 3 teams and 2 solo runners in total, and lets just say, there was a lot of blue and orange on show for the entire weekend! 🙂


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Date: Saturday 11th June – Sunday 12th June 2016

Time: 12:00 – 12:00

Weather: Overcast and quite muggy at times, spots of rain on and off on the Saturday, and then some showers on Sunday morning.

Course: The start of the loop was on tarmac and uphill! You then run on gravel, on an undulating pathway from 1K through to 5k. At 5K you experience the aptly named ‘Heartbreak Hill’. Once you have reached the top of the hill it is pretty much downhill all the way. You run through the forest, twisting and turning through the trees. I will admit to screaming down a hill around 6.5k! When you get back to the camping field, you have a small zig-zag section on the grass until you get to the exchange (for the teams) section.

My race: I had no idea what to expect with this, and knew that the race was more about enjoyment than distance or speed. I was lucky enough to be in a team of seven, but I still managed to complete 5 loops! I was the second runner in our team and was lucky enough to run the first lap with Cat. She was in one of the other Run MND teams and we explored, and experienced the course for the first time together whilst chatting away. We completed the first lap in 51: 57.

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Lap 1 with @catu79 #endure24

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I was a little concerned about lap 2, as I wondered if I would enjoy it as much as the first as I was setting out on my own. I also didn’t know if my legs would be tired from the first lap. I started lap 2 around 6:45pm, so my only goal was to be back in time for the football! I completed lap 3 in 48:41

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Lap 3 was at 2am in the morning, and I was excited to see what it was like running in the dark. I again headed out on my own, but soon started chatting to another runner, and experienced a lot of this lap with her. The glow sticks and fairy lights put up around the course made this lap feel magical – ok it could have been the sleep deprivation too! I walked all of the hills and the steep downhill, but still managed to completed the lap in 59:58.

 

After lap 3, I headed back to the tent to get some sleep, and really should have been able to get a good 4 and a half hours in. I managed 2! The paranoia of thinking you should be running and that you have missed you exchange really plays havoc with your sleep!

Lap 4 was at 8 am in the morning, and I enjoyed it far more than I thought I would. There was no pressure, I just ran and if I wanted to walk I did. I felt really hungry towards the end of this lap, which is not surprising as I hadn’t fuelled after the last lap and then only had a banana before this lap. I looked forward to my breakfast after this lap. I completed it in 53:03

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Lap 5 for me was the final lap of the race, and we organised it so I got to run/walk it with 2 of the other Run MND runners. They had been in smaller teams, so we just enjoyed a little running and lots of walking. As we approached the finish line the rest of the RUN MND joined us, and I could feel myself get emotional. It was just so special for us all to finish together.

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Lesson learned: I actually don’t mind off-road and should probably try it more often! I need to take more clothes next year, as changing into fresh kit after every lap is SO nice!

Pros: 

  • Being part of such an amazing team, and running with along side some amazing/inspiring people.
  • Raising awareness for MNDA
  • Completing 25 miles in a race, and not having to do the marathon shuffle and backward stair walk the day after!
  • The weather was very reasonable considering the floods happening elsewhere in the UK. I think this could have been a very different event had the rain come down, or even the sun been out too much.
  • The extras put on by the organisers; a big screen for runners to watch the England Match, the fairy lights at night, the constant encouragement from the marshals

Cons

  • There were some issues with the toilets and showers in our camping field, which wasn’t pleasant.
  • Even though the catering was very reasonably priced, they could have done with more outlets, as the queues were quite long at times.
  • Not really sure whose fault this is, but the fact is, after this event, I feel myself thinking about attempting an Ultra – maybe I am still sleep deprived!

So, to some it all up, if you are thinking of doing it, I say go for it. There were runners of all abilities and everyone was supportive. Thank you to my Run MND family for making this weekend so much fun, and for encouraging me to sign up to it. I have already registered my name for next years event!!!

Have you run an Ultra before? Would you recommend it? Please leave comments below to tell me it’s a silly idea! 

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Three things Friday – My #FridayFinds #8

Firstly, let me apologise for there not being a #Fridayfinds for last week. For some reason, WordPress decided to play up and I was unable to access my account. By the time the problem was fixed, I didn’t think #Fridayfinds was appropriate for a Saturday!

So, what have I found interesting this week:

1.

https://twitter.com/nicsnutrition/status/738388561385431040

I loved this post from @nicsnutrition. For some reason I am very good at developing bad habits; sugar in tea, not drinking enough water and neglecting stretching after a run (I could go on and on and on!) but the good habits, especially when linked to nutrition are hard!

Thinking about it as being ‘hard’ is a funny concept, as when I train to run faster, it is hard, but I can stick to that and be determined. So why can’t I work ‘hard‘ with nutrition? I now need to adopt my running approach to my nutrition. So today I have started to form my first habit; I started the day with a pint of water, and no cup of tea. Only another 20 days of doing this, and it will become second nature 🙂

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2.

June is MND awareness month, so it is only fair that I feature The Motor Neurone Disease Association again. If you are new to the blog, you can read here, and here (To be honest, all throughout the blog) why I support this charity.

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3.

I don’t think I really have words for this. I know I don’t go to Parkrun as much as I would like too, but I hope as my daughter gets older, we will be able to go together. The Parkrun community is special and I am assuming the council members that have forced this Parkrun to stop have never been lucky enough to take part and feel part of a very special community.

 

So that’s my three for this week. As always please feel free to comment/share or email me with anything that you have found and think would be good to share.

Happy Friday!