Moray runner sets 2020 charity challenge
A KEITH man has set himself a series of gruelling challenges to raise funds for a charity which has given him years of support.
Ian Anderson (42) aims to complete two marathons as well as two half marathons during 2020.
Along the way, he is raising money for Diabetes UK – the charity which has been there for him since he was diagnosed with the condition at the age of 13.
Ian, who ran his first marathon last year, will need to follow a strict training plan and has also set himself a fundraising goal of £4000 – www.justgiving.com/fundraising/iananderson-2020.
He said: "For so many years I was told that type 1 diabetes would put a lot of restrictions on what I could do with my life. As a 13-year-old teenage boy I rebelled and for many years I really did fly by the seat of my pants when it came to looking after myself and my diabetes care suffered.
"After years of neglect, denial and allowing diabetes to rule my life I finally took charge.
"It was almost too little too late and years of not doing what I was supposed to do resulted in me losing my hypo awareness, numerous hospital admissions and blue light taxis (ambulances) and a decline in my health."
The breakthrough for Ian came in the form of an insulin pump.
"To say that this revolutionary piece of equipment has given me a new lease of life and turned my life around would be an understatement," he said.
"I finally managed to get my diabetes control back to a reasonable standard and my health has taken a turn for the better. As a result of having better control I can now do some of the things that I couldn't have even dreamt of before. The main one of course is being able to run a marathon."
Last March, he ran the Inverness Half Marathon and then ran, walked, hobbled and crawled his way over the finishing line on the Mall at the London Marathon.
"The feeling of achievement and elation will never leave me," he recalled.
Having caught the running bug, Ian then took on the Simply Health Great Aberdeen Run in August followed by the Loch Ness Marathon in October.
He said: "For 2020 I have decided to set myself the task of running not one, but two full marathons and half marathons. I want to raise as much money for the charity that has given me so much support over the years and hopefully help spread the word and inspire others."
Ian's first challenge for 2020 will be the Inverness Half Marathon on March 8 followed by the Virgin Money London Marathon on April 26.
Then it will be on to Scotland's capital for the Edinburgh Marathon on May 24 and then down to Newcastle for the Great North Run on September 13.