Jonathan Pyle (Founder of The Purple Teapot Puppet Company) – talks to the Run Reigate team about dressing up for race day and why fancy dress is the way forward!
This will be my third Reigate Half Marathon for the Children’s Trust. Two years ago I ran to test my own level of fitness, impress my wife and children and at the same time raise some money for a very worthy cause. Last year ,however, I decided to do something a bit different, in an effort to increase the amount of sponsorship money I raised.
As a result of reaching my target last year, I ran the half marathon in a horse costume. (Usually you inflate them but I filled mine up with cushions and material I found lying around the house as inflating it wasn’t an option !)
What I could never have anticipated, however, was the joy and fun it brought to all those children (and grown-ups) who came out to support us as we ran through their villages and past their houses giving us the vital support, encouragement and jelly babies we needed to keep us going. I could see children far in the distance pointing to ‘the funny man on a donkey’ and as I ran past ‘attempt’ to go into a trot. Not only that, but the encouragement from other runners and stewards on the day was one of the most heart-warming experiences I have ever had.
This year I will be running the half marathon in a different ‘costume.’ Again I will look silly and it may knock around 20 minutes off my personal best but it will be worth it to give something back to all those children (and grown-ups) who cheered me, and you, on last year. It would be wonderful to see more people ‘dress up’ for this year’s half marathon and put a smile on the faces of those that support us, irrespective of the charity you run are running for, maybe even raising more money in the process.
Jonathan Pyle (Founder of The Purple Teapot Puppet Company)