When Nick Everett was forced to isolate during the COVID lockdowns, he admits he began to pile on the pounds and struggled to feel motivated.
But as life slowly returned to normal, he became determined to set himself a marathon challenge to improve his fitness whilst raising much-needed funds for a charity close to his heart, St Catherine’s Hospice.
Nick, 48, from Preston, said: “I used to be very active and played a lot of sport when I was younger, and before the pandemic I would walk for miles. It was pretty soul-destroying not being able to see family and friends when I was shielding, due to a ruptured spleen from nearly 30 years ago during a game of rugby.
“I’m not really built for running, but when I was allowed to get out and about again I knew it was time to do something, because I’d become incredibly overweight and unfit. I decided to take on a huge challenge of doing the Manchester Marathon in April 2022.
“I started training last June, running every few days, spurred on by my amazing wife, children, family, friends and colleagues who are my motivators. During my first few months of training it was always the same; I’d get home struggling to breathe and something was hurting! It’s been tough in recent months too as I’ve been running in all weather conditions, but people’s encouragement and seeing how much I’m raising for St Catherine’s Hospice has really kept me going.
“Some of my closest family and friends have been cared for by the charity, which is a very valuable community facility helping people in need at really difficult times. It’s very dear to me and I’ve been a supporter of the cause for some years now, completing charitable events on numerous occasions, the sense of being able to give back to the community is something I am very proud of.”
Nick, who lives with his wife and two grown-up children, added: “I’ve also been on a strict diet and been supported by my physio, and so far I’ve covered more than 350 miles, burned around 53,000 calories and raised nearly £2,500 for St Catherine’s including Gift Aid.
“My story is no different to anyone else’s and my challenge may not be as big as some, but for someone who isn’t a regular runner, this has been huge for me and it has pushed my commitment, motivation and body to the limit!”
• To follow Nick’s progress, to leave a message of support or donate to his Manchester Marathon Challenge, please click here.
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