Fundraising stories

Amy’s London Marathon Story

On April 23rd Amy will join a team of 16 WheelPower runners on the start line of the London Marathon. This will be Amy’s first Marathon and she is delighted to be running for a charity that is very close to her heart.

This is Amy’s Marathon Story …

Amy portrait

Amy has been working for the National Paralympic Heritage Trust at Stoke Mandeville Stadium since 2020. She joined the NPHT at the end of 2020 during lockdown as their company administrator, and now in addition is also their collections administrator. Her background however has always been in art. “I did a degree in Brighton in 3 dimension design, with plastics, metal and materials, and I used to do big sculptures but as life progressed I focussed more on painting, as I could do that in my spare time. I’ve always been creative and also drawn and painted since I was little. Most of my artwork is now inspired by landscapes, changing weather, big skies, clouds, natural textures, and seascapes. I tend to work in acrylics and mix media collage, and my art ranges from very abstract to more obvious landscapes but still impressionistic.”

Why Running?

“I like keeping fit and have always run. I love the outdoors and do a lot of walking with my dog. I find running is really relaxing for me and I tend to do a lot of trail running in the countryside near my home in Chesham. The best thing about running is that you can do it anywhere and you don’t need any equipment.”

"I've done one marathon distance before, but that was a virtual challenge trail over 6 hours in the Chiltern hills where I was running on my own. I’ve never done a road marathon with others so London will be new to me and as a result I've had to change my training to get more miles on tarmac. Back in April last year I did a half marathon in Wales and after the end of that, someone suggested the Barbados half marathon! It was very different from what I’m used. We set off at 5am and it was already 28 degrees, so it was tough!"

Amy at Stoke Mandeville Stadium whilst training

Choosing WheelPower

“Working at the National Paralympic Heritage Trust (NPHT) we work closely with WheelPower and as part of my role I do a lot of work on the WheelPower collection in the archives.  I knew that the charity had marathon places in previous years so I thought it would be nice to run for someone that I have a local connection with.”

"Working at Stoke Mandeville Stadium I get to see at firsthand the work WheelPower and really see all the efforts in action. Looking back through the history and what has been achieved over the past 75 years, is really great to have in my head as motivation when I’m doing those hard training miles. Linking this challenge to my day job is really nice and 'WheelPower is a real charity to me, and you know why you’re doing it and who you are doing it for."

Training and Fundraising

“Training hasn’t been going too bad so far! It’s different knowing that you have to get the miles in rather than just going because you want to, and I’ve found that I really enjoy the long runs. We are lucky in Buckinghamshire that you can run in all directions and there’s lots of nice places to run. There have been a few wet weekends over the Winter that was a bit miserable, and I’m starting to creek slightly but just need to make sure I make it to the day now.”

“For the fundraising I thought I’d play to my strengths and offer some Art workshops that I don’t normally do. They are going to be called Have a Go Days when everyone who comes along will get to try 3 different workshops. It sold out immediately within a week and will be lovely to combine my two interests, my art as well as explaining why I’m running the marathon all in one space.”

Amy marathon training and holding up her medal

"The fundraising has given me a bit more to consider, and is a little bit more out of my comfort zone, having to ask people for things and put yourself out there. Everyone is having to consider what they're spending at the moment so I’m really grateful for the level of support I’ve had so far and the donations I’ve had."

Amy is one of 16 London Marathon runners representing WheelPower in 2023. We are thankful to her for sharing her own fitness journey and we hope her story may inspire you to take on a charity challenge for WheelPower in the future. Whether it is a run, a walk, a push, a ride or even a skydive there are so many ways to achieve a dream with WheelPower whilst making a real difference to so many lives. 

Why should you donate

"Donating to a charity like WheelPower will make a real difference. They are local to me and you can come down and see where the money is being used and see the benefits of the families from being able to use facilities that are accessible to all is fantastic. You don’t have to donate a lot, but every little bit you can give will top up my pot and make a difference. There's a lot of worthy causes out there but I do think that sport and that sense of community, giving people the opportunities to be active, whatever your level has always been important to me. To be part of a community of like-minded people and providing access to that for everybody is really important. Especially at the moment whilst there is a lot of pressure on families and cuts to a lot of facilities."

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