The Great North Run is synonymous with the City of Newcastle. The North East of England plays host to the annual event, and is the largest half marathon in the world. The World's Elite runners are showcased on televisions as they cross the iconic Tyne Bridge and make their way to the beautiful North East coast.
But what captures the heart of the event is the 50,000+ weekend warriors that tackle this half marathon, pushing the boundaries to complete this epic 13 mile course. Many of these runners are not only doing it for themselves but are running for loved ones, friends, and raising money to support some amazing charities.
This year, our team has three runners, all of whom are running for charities and causes that are close to their heart.
1. Ben Cleary, Founder - Running for Lyme Disease UK
2. Alex Redpath, Head Brewer - Running for Action for M.E.
3. Jordan Crulley, North East Sales - Running for Dystonia Society UK
(L-R) Jordan Crulley, Ross McClane, Graeme Dickson, Ben Cleary, Alex Redpath completed the 10K Gateshead event in April preparing for the Great North Run.
We have set-up a product on our webshop where all proceeds will be split between the three charities.
If you would prefer to donate to one or all three runners through the official GNR website, these are linked below.
Ben is running for Lyme Disease UK, as he has witnessed the terrible effects it can have on the human body. While travelling Australia, a friend of Ben's, Sophia, was bitten by a tic, and initially no signs were present and the pair continued their trip creating some great memories. At the age of 26, Sophia started to show signs of Lyme disease with her condition continually deteriorating. Many specialists doctor's from all fields have been tried, but none have been successful. Sophia, now 34 years of age, has lost all mobility and independence, to the point where she is now bedridden, in a darkened room barely able to move or communicate.
At present, there is no test which can rule out Lyme disease as current testing is flawed. False negative results are possible and there is also no test to show you have been cured.
Alex is running for Action for M.E. for his wife Emma, who was diagnosed with M.E. 8 years ago. When speaking about her disability Emma says "it has limited by ability to study and work full time, go to the gym and run like I used to, and leaves me with a daily battle with brain fog and ensuring I get enough good quality rest. I am aware that I am only mildly affected, and have an excellent support network both at home and work. Others aren't so lucky and need more external support form organisations such as Action for M.E."
People with M.E, (PwME) find that even the smallest exertion can floor them; their joints and muscles ache unbearably; restful sleep eludes them; and ‘brain fog’ clouds even the smallest judgment. There is no known cure for M.E., and there is little consensus around what causes it. Funding raised by Action for M.E. goes to supporting those diagnosed to better manage, understand and survive their condition. The charity also supports research investigating the potential causes and treatments for ME.
Jordan is running for Dystonia Society UK and running for his dad who was medically retired due to his diagnosis of the rare neuron condition while in his 30s. It's a debilitating condition and to this day Jordan's dad has to medicate daily in order to keep on top of it and keep his discomfort to a minimum. At it's peak, he would be bedbound for weeks at a time. One odd memory Jordan shared is of bringing him a carton of orange juice to hospital, where he would often have lengthy stays.
Dystonia is a neurological movement disorder that is estimated to affect at least 100,000 people in the UK and can affect any region of the body. Dystonia is caused by incorrect signals from the brain, resulting in uncontrollable muscle spasms, which can, for some, be painful. It is the 3rd most common movement disorder. Dystonia is a lifelong condition, which can affect both children and adults and currently has no cure.