Ok so yes, its a bit of a Cliché, I am putting my heart into running London, it’s a cause close to my heart, I signed up in a heart beat and countless other puns I could use.
There you go, I am sure you can guess who I am running the Virgin London Marathon 2018 for….. The British Heart Foundation. Whilst the three phases listed above maybe a bit of fun and good puns, they are also so very true. The British Heart Foundation is a charity which is very close to my heart and once I saw that they were offering places for VLM18 I entered my name into their ballot in a heart beat, no thinking was required, there is no other charity I would run this race, this year for and I will put my heart into running it to the very best of my ability come April 22nd 2018.
Why run for the British Heart Foundation I hear you say? I have wanted to answer for question for a number of months but it is not an easy one to answer, I decided to give myself a few months before writing this.
I will be running VLM18 in memory of my mother who passed away at the end of September 2017 following a massive heart failure. Mum had suffered from heart issues dating back to 2005, multiple heart attacks, stents a pace maker & defibrillator fitted which kept her heart going during many heart issues after that.
When the British Heart Foundation charity ballot opened, I did not hesitate to put my name down and entered my reasons for wanting to run and represent the BHF. Back then I wanted to run it for my mother and do my very best to raise awareness of the many heart issues we may face in our lives and maybe just do my little bit to raise some money to help reduce the risk of heart disease, one day maybe we could find a prevention to this and end the suffering many tens of thousands of people go through each year.
The very last memory I have of my mother was upon my return from the Berlin Marathon 2017, I went to her care home and showed her my medal, she told me how well I had done and how proud she was that I had ran a marathon and asked me about the London Marathon which I was running for her (not in memory of back then). She said she was looking forward to seeing that medal as well. Less than 12 hours after that conversation she passed away in her sleep.
I have set up a JustGiving page to help me raise sponsor money for the British Heart Foundation which is linked here: www.justgiving.com/markhatton2018 it goes without saying, any donation you may wish to make, whether that be 1p, £1 or £10, will be greatly appreciated by both myself and the British Heart Foundation. I have to say a MASSIVE thank you to those who have already donated and helped me reach £1,500.00 with more than 3 months still to go.
To go one step further, I have now decided that I am going to run the VLM18 in fancy dress, wearing a love heart costume (still in construction), and hopefully, to honour my mothers memory even more….. attempt to break the official World Record for running a marathon dressed as a Love Heart. What better way to honour someone than go out and break the world record right? It will not be an easy one but, this is where I am putting my Heart into running the Virgin London Marathon.