Why have you decided to take part and run the full 26.2 miles of this year’s Deep River Rock Belfast Marathon? What motivated you to enter and train during the winter months?
Stuart Best: Having been very active in my youth with football, I unfortunately suffered from a hip injury which meant having to stop doing the thing I loved the most. After undergoing hip surgery I started to run to build my fitness up again and my first challenge in my road to recovery was running in the White’s relay team in 2016 for Mencap. I was hugely encouraged on how well I did and how much I enjoyed it and this spurred me on to do the full 26.2 miles. Seeing my time improve on each run has been great motivation during the winter months.
We want to encourage other to get active and run for Mencap. What reasons would you give other people to encourage them to take on a marathon challenge and fundraise for Mencap? What three words would you sat to help inspire and motivate them.
SB: My three words would be ASPIRE TO INSPIRE. The work that Mencap does is inspiring , offering a vital support network for families whose children have been diagnosed with a learning disability. Both the challenge of running 26.2 miles and the fundraising goal of helping Mencap achieve their £150,000 target has be hugely motivational for me.
What would be your top reason why people should get involved and #stepupformencap and what are your tips for staying active and for endurance training?
SB: You don’t want an easy life even if you think you do. Set yourself a goal, achieve it and #stepupformencap.
Many smartphones have activity apps which count your steps throughout the day. Keep count and try to do a few more every day.Don’t start out too fast, ease yourself into the run and your body will thank you later, Good nutrition is also key especially in the form of slow release carbohydrates and I’m fortunate working for White’s to have a ready supply of porridge at hand.
When you have finished the marathon, what is the first thing that comes to mind? Upon reflection how would you do things differently when training for next year’s marathon?
SB: I haven’t done the marathon yet so I’ll tell you on the 1st of May but I know I’ll feel a huge sense of personal achievement! For next year I would take more time out for recovery treatments and massages.