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Glenn’s Marathon Challenge

10th July 2017

Meet one of our amazing fundraisers Glenn, who has a son with autism and will be raising money in a series of runs from April to October. We talked to Glenn about his motivation, why he decided to fundraise for Autism West Midlands and how his runs are going so far.

Why did you decide to fundraise for Autism West Midlands?
Our son George was diagnosed with ASD last autumn by which time we had already sought support from Autism West Midlands whilst he was on the Umbrella Pathway. I signed up for the Birmingham International Marathon just a few weeks following his diagnosis and we very quickly decided that I would use it as an opportunity to fundraise for Autism West Midlands.

Are you into challenge events and running in particular?
Like many, I decided to take up running in my forties to try and regain some of the fitness I had in my twenties! Eventually this led to me running a couple of 10Ks and Half Marathons over the last 2 to 3 years. I kind of got the bug then, so in a moment of blind optimism signed up for the marathon!

Seven distance races in less than a year are a serious challenge, why so many?
I think it was over Christmas that I saw that the Great Birmingham 10K was held in April and the thought came to me that I could make a bit of a year of it, starting and finishing in Birmingham. Then for each month in between I could pick events around the West Midlands to run and promote the charity. It’s also had the added bonus of ensuring I keep up with the training and remain focused on the end goal.

You have completed 4 races so far, how did they go for you?
I’ve really enjoyed them, although running the Shrewsbury Half Marathon during the June heatwave is probably the most physically and mentally demanding thing I’ve ever done. I’m hoping it stands me in good stead for the races to come.

How much have you raised so far?
We’ve raised over £1150 so far and I’ve been pledged some more if I complete the marathon.

Can anyone donate to your cause and how?
Yes of course, we have a fundraising page here and we have also been receiving offline donations.

What kind of support have you received from Autism West Midlands for your child with autism?
We’ve found the Helpline and website invaluable and we’ve also been able to take advantage of some of the activities that are laid on, such as sibling support.

Do you plan to take on more challenges or running events in the future?
Ask me again on October 16th!! Joking apart I think I’ll continue running for the foreseeable future, what the distance will be we’ll have to wait and see. I do quite fancy a Mud Runner though so perhaps that will be 2018’s challenge.

Are you receiving encouragement from friends and family?
Yes plenty. It’s one of the positives of the Social Media age that people can quickly keep up with events and offer their support and encouragement. On the home front, the family have been very supportive especially as we have to fit a lot of things around my training and the events themselves.

Are you pleased you took on the challenge of running 7 races, including your first full marathon?
Definitely, it’s been really rewarding so far. It’s going to get a whole lot tougher over the next couple of months, but I’m looking forward to it.


Thank you Glenn for all of your support and we wish you the very best of luck in all of your future runs!


Just £15 helps run our Information Advice Line for one hour. Providing and listening ear and vital support to those who are affected by autism. For information on supporting Autism West Midlands or to download our fundraising pack click here

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