Lockdown marathon runner smashes fundraising target

CHARITY runner Kim Owens smashed her fundraising target over the weekend after a gruelling marathon around her own home.

Kim had originally hoped to raise £3,000 for LinkAble as part of the inspirational nationwide ‘2.6 challenge’ to help support local charities. With gift aid attached, the current total is heading for £5,000.

Charity Runner Kim Owens

LinkAble delivers a diverse range of services for children and adults with learning disabilities in the Woking and Surrey Heath area, including holiday schemes, crafts, cycling, drama.

“It was the most amazing morning,” said Kim. “The support I received from my family, friends and neighbours was unbelievable. The run brought in over £4,383, and the donations are still coming in. I’m thrilled for LinkAble, which I know need these funds more than ever.”

After 12 weeks of training, Kim had been hoping to take part in Sunday’s London Marathon, but after it was postponed she decided to stick with the plan and race around her own garden and driveway instead so that LinkAble wouldn’t miss out.

Filming the event live on Facebook on Sunday morning, Kim was helped along with hundreds of messages of encouragement as donations flooded in.

“Over the course of the run, we had to launch six new live videos due to internet connection, but my husband Jamie did a great job of helping viewers find the new links. During the run we had almost 1,960 views and nearly 500 wishes of support.”

“The first 10 kilometres were the hardest part,” she said. “It took my body a while to warm up as I couldn’t get much speed or momentum up, and it also became obvious my ankles and hips were going to suffer. At 10 kilometres, I decided to extend my loop slightly to avoid getting injured, this was a great move and I started to get into a rhythm.”

“With two miles to go, lots of my lovely neighbours from our Kings Hundred development in Bisley came out to cheer me on. That meant everything to me.”

Her sons Harry (10) and Willem (9) joined Kim to complete their own 2.6 challenge by running 2.6 kilometres – and even their dog, Maggie, joined in with a few laps of support.

Kim ,who kicked off the race at 6.45am and completed the full 26.2 miles in an impressive four hours and 38 minutes, celebrated her success by putting her feet up with a well-earned glass of Cava.

And even after that mammoth effort, Kim still plans to run the London Marathon this October.

LinkAble’s Rhys Parker was delighted: “We are so pleased for Kim to have completed this challenge and the fact she is representing LinkAble.

“Of all the charities to raise money for, we’re so very thankful that she has chosen to raise money for us, to support children and adults with learning disabilities within the local community – especially at a time when every charity is working so hard to adapt their services and need the support more than ever,” he said.

“Hopefully, her story will inspire a few more people to fundraise for LinkAble in the future.”

To donate, visit https://bit.ly/3bNQRo8

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