So, after my last blog post, you may be pleased to hear I was allowed to keep my job after outing our Chief Executive, Martin, as a grouchy runner.
It appears that my post went down rather well in fact. At one point it seemed like a day wouldn’t pass when Martin didn’t announce rather grumpily (of course) that someone was donating because I dared to call him grouchy and not because of the 26.2 miles he was planning to run!
I’m not sure what this says about Martin’s friends – perhaps they were delighted that he’d finally been called out as a grouch after all these years? Or perhaps he’s a lovable grouch and I just happened to capture his personality perfectly? I’m not sure it would be prudent for me to comment on this.
Before the marathon there were a few moments when I was a little bit concerned that Martin would put off the crowds with his scowls as he ran past. The 5am training runs were definitely taking their toll. I don’t think Martin was questioning his reason to run but there were definitely times when he questioned how he found himself here.
Yet the Friday before, Martin came back from the London Marathon Expo with (whisper it) a smile on his face! He grumbled that I made him take a photo at the Expo, sure, and he scoffed at the idea that simply reaching the start line was an achievement*, but the scowling had definitely diminished.
To my shock, the last thing Martin said before leaving the office that Friday was that he was actually excited! He even had a little glint in his eye – although this may have been suppressed anger as I’d just told him off for not wearing a Tomorrow’s People vest on race day (it’s possible I was on thin ice at this point).
Fast forward to Sunday and I was equipped with sparkly pom poms, banners, balloons and my cheering partner in crime, Lucy. To say we were excited is an understatement. I was in danger of losing my voice before the elite race had even finished.
We were stationed at Tower Bridge when we saw Martin. He gave us a jaunty wave and kept going but, at half way, he was making it look easy. Lucy and I on the other hand went berserk. I forgot how to speak and just shrieked like a banshee instead of shouting his name. We’re told this was a highlight of the day although I’m not entirely convinced he wasn’t just running away from us…
When Martin came back to the office on Tuesday (we let him have one day off to recover) he was not only smiling, he was grinning. He was positively buoyant, in fact, at which point I promptly lost interest as it was only fun when we could tease him.
So, enough about Martin. We had six more amazing runners cross the finish line on Sunday, raising £13,000 and counting. Mark, Paul, Craig, Will, Martijn and James – we’re so proud of your achievement. Thank you for your hard work, determination and incredible fundraising efforts. Special mention also goes to Paul for being our fastest #TeamTomorrow runner at 3 hours, eleven minutes and 42 seconds. Superb.
On behalf of all the young people you’re helping, we can’t thank you enough. You really are changing lives.
Our not-so-grouchy runner, Martin, is feeling so positive he’s already committed to running next year – even when I reminded him about the 5am runs. Will you join him? We’ll have some charity places available but don’t forget to enter the ballot when it opens on Monday 1st May for a chance to guarantee your place.
Can’t wait? We have places in Royal Parks Half Marathon this October if you want to start your training early.
*For the record, everyone who made it to the start line on Sunday – you are awesome.