Training for a first marathon is a huge challenge at the best of times, and the thick snow, freezing temperatures and heavy downpours of recent weeks could be enough to put off some novices.
But Simon Hicks, a nurse on Lionel Cosin ward at Basildon University Hospital, has been determinedly training to achieve his goal of completing the 26.2 mile course in London and raising money to enhance care for patients on his ward.
Simon got the running bug two years ago after completing a 10k event. He said: “I entered the London marathon on a whim, but I knew ballot places were very limited, so I thought there wouldn’t be much chance of me having to run.
“I forgot all about it, and when the information pack arrived it was a surprise, but I thought ‘I’m 27, I’m lucky to be fit and healthy, and the only excuse not to do it is laziness.’”
The weather has affected Simon’s training plan but he hopes to go as far as 20 miles before the big day on 22 April.
Simon has been a nurse at the trust for eight months, and says he always wanted to work with older people.
He added: “I will just be happy to get round and raise money for the ward. Many of our patients are living with dementia and I want the money to go on things that will make their hospital stay more comfortable. That’s a huge motivation for me to do it.”
Cathy Bituin, manager on Lionel Cosin ward, said: “We are all really proud of Simon and will be cheering him on. He is a very caring nurse and this shows in his work and also in this extra effort he is making for our patients.”
If you would like to sponsor Simon, please go to: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/lionel-cosin-marathon