Think of a Half Marathon and images of sweaty, tired runners plodding their way around an incomprehensible 13.1mile route will spring to mind. Aching legs and spectators guide them over the finish line where they collect an obligatory medal and finisher’s t-shirt, before celebrating their achievements over a well-deserved pint – you may see a selfie of this on social media later that afternoon.
But what else goes into that race that you don’t see in the media coverage or social media updates?
For one group of Bristol runners, it involves 100 days of dedication, perseverance, discipline and teamwork, all to support their favourite charity – Empire Fighting Chance.
The 100 Day Challenge is a running initiative devised by Bristol-based charity, Empire Fighting Chance which enables people of all abilities to cross the finish line of the Bristol Half Marathon on the 15th September, with 100 days of dedicated training, support and camaraderie.
Last year around 100 people took part in the challenge for Empire Fighting Chance, over 50% of whom were beginner runners. By tackling the training 1 mile at a time, and with a dedicated team to assist, they soon learnt that perseverance and a positive mood enabled them to reach their long-term goals. Within a few weeks, 1 mile turned into 2, 2 into 3, 3 into 4...
For many, they spend the 100 days learning about their body, mind, will-power and training their brain to believe in their ability. Empire Fighting Chance link those themes to the pioneering work they do in supporting vulnerable young people; through their unique combination of non-contact boxing and personal mentoring, they inspire young people to realise and reach their unique potential.
During their 100-day training plan, runners are also testing their skills as fundraisers as they aim to raise £100 each in sponsorship. Events Fundraiser, Sophie Birch said “Running for Empire Fighting Chance and getting sponsored means this is much more than ‘just a run’ for our Team Empire. As well as being an achievement for themselves physically, it’s an achievement for every single young person who we support. I always tell runners that having this in the back of your mind is like a little turbo charge during the rainy days of training, or mile 12 of the race!”
On 7th June, Empire Fighting Chance will launch the 2019 100 Day Challenge, welcoming all #TeamEmpire runners to their boxing gym in Easton where they’ll take their first steps on the journey towards the Bristol Half Marathon.
If you’d like to help transform young lives by becoming part of #TeamEmpire in The 100 Day Challenge, contact Sophie on firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://www.empirefightingchance.org/events/100day/.
Each runner will enjoy 10 complimentary BoxFit classes, 5 bootcamp sessions across Bristol, tailored fundraising support, access to the private online #TeamEmpire group and an Empire Fighting Chance running vest!
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