Mrs Hatton

St Catherine’s Hospice – Runner’s Blog


Jenny Hatton is just one of 21 runners taking part in Run Reigate in aid of St Catherine’s Hospice. Here she shares why she’s taking on the challenge this September:

“My mum, Mary, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in December 2014. She’d beaten bowel cancer several years previously and sailed through her treatment, she even drove herself to and from her radiotherapy appointments in Guildford. When Mum was diagnosed and told that the cancer was incurable, she took the decision not to have treatment. She’d been offered palliative chemotherapy on a Wednesday but that was the day she met up with her friends for lunch every week and she viewed that as a much better form of ‘treatment’. Mum chose quality of life over quantity, a decision I fully respected and supported and although she fought bravely and stoically, she passed away in November 2015.

The team at St Catherine’s supported us during Mum’s final months. Mum didn’t want to go into the hospice for respite care “in case I don’t come out” but after several very tough days at home she went into the hospice for 10 days and then didn’t want to leave. She stayed there for three weeks. The staff were so caring and kind, nothing was too much trouble; they laughed with us and cried with us, supported us and just held our hands at a very difficult time. They were there at any time of day or night, which was so reassuring.

Mrs Hatton

When Mum went into St Catherine’s, she had completely lost her appetite and had eaten very little for days but I remember her being given a bowl of chocolate sponge and sauce on arrival and she ate the lot. She visibly relaxed and you could sense her relief at being there. St Catherine’s is an incredible place, the drinks trolley goes round at 5pm, a neighbouring cat comes in and takes up residence on patients’ beds and anything that can be done is done to make everyone feel at ease – Mum was a big horse racing fan and they arranged for a copy of the Racing Post to be delivered to her every day. 

We had arranged a party for Mum six weeks before she passed away. A gathering of more than 60 of her friends, neighbours and colleagues, many travelling from far and wide to be there. Mum had been in St Catherine’s for 10 days prior to the party and without their support the party would not have taken place. One of the nurses at St Catherine’s helped Mum get ready for the party and she was well enough to attend and enjoy the day. It was wonderful and I have many photos and happy memories as does everyone who was there.

I took part in the first Run Reigate Half Marathon in 2014 which went past Mum’s front door. She came out to watch and although the route has been changed, it feels right that I should take part in the race on 18 September in her memory. St Catherine’s works with people and they were there for me and Mum when it mattered. I do not know what we would have done without them.”

To find out more about how you can support St Catherine’s please visit www.stch.org.uk or to support Jenny with her fundraising please visit: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/JennyHatton

 

St Catherine's Hospice Runner

St. Catherine’s Hospice – Charity Partner


Many people think a hospice is a place where people spend their final moments, but at St Catherine’s Hospice the focus is on helping people make the most of the time they have left.

The local hospice encourages patients to live well and recognises that people are more than their illness; it’s not their diagnosis, but their individual wishes and needs that matter most to the people at St Catherine’s.

Committed to providing the local community with the best possible end of life care, the local hospice has been providing free, expert care to people across Sussex and Surrey for the last 30 years. Last year, more than 2,000 patients were cared for at the hospice and in the comfort of their own homes, including 175 patients from Reigate*.

As well as tailored practical care, St Catherine’s also offers people: emotional support, welfare advice, spiritual care, occupational therapy, physiotherapy, complementary therapies and creative activities such as music and art. The hospice recognises that, at such a challenging time, emotional support is just as important as the physical care they provide, and are also there to offer support and advice to families, friends and carers.

Although their services are free, each day it costs St Catherine’s more than £17,000 to provide their care. Receiving less than a third of their running costs from the NHS, for the rest, the hospice relies on the generosity and support of the local community. By supporting Run Reigate, you’re helping ensure St Catherine’s can be there for people in future, when and where they are needed most – there can be no better motivation to run.

If you would like to find out more about how you can help support St Catherine’s, please visit:

www.stch.org.uk or call 01293 447361.

*Town figures from 2014/2015

One of our runners…

Joelle is just one runner taking part in Run Reigate and raising money for St Catherine’s Hospice.  Joelle was kind enough to give her thoughts about running for St Catherine’s this year.

“I ran last year and although it was tough I really enjoyed the atmosphere and the satisfaction of running my first half marathon. I knew a couple of my friends, (Kate and Romy) were keen and so once I saw we could run for St Catherine’s, the decision was made.  We all agreed it was a great reason to sign up!

I work at Reigate Manor and St Catherine’s is our chosen charity because it does wonderful things for people in our local community, we’ve also got our General and Assistant Managers to sign up to take part.

We each have a target of £250 but would ideally like to raise more.  We will have a JustGiving page which we will put all over Facebook and Twitter and just generally pester our friends and families to give as generously as they can!

Training is the hardest part, between us we have six children aged two to six and are juggling work and various other commitments.  We have to try and run in the evenings and weekends but we all have different schedules so we just get out for a run whenever we can.

It’s much more fun running together!

Running 13.1 miles and raising money for such a worthy charity gives you the biggest sense of achievement.  If you’re thinking about doing it in future years, just do it!”

 

If you would like to raise money for St. Catherine’s Hospice whilst running this year’s Run Reigate, please get in touch.

BMF Marathon team

The Run Reigate Guide to Surviving the London Marathon!


You’ve trained for months, you’ve planned your route, worn in your new trainers, picked out your most comfortable kit and finally the big race day is here.  Many of our wonderful Run Reigate runners will join with 36,000 others next Sunday, to take part in one of the world’s biggest and most famous distance races, the London Marathon.   Our local British Military Fitness crew have entered a massive team, running to raise money for The Children’s Trust, one of our own charities and we wish them all the best of luck.

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For any first time marathon runner, it can be daunting, and we’re not talking covering the 26.2 miles.  It’s more than just physical endurance: the marathon is a logistical, biological and psychological obstacle course. For those of you getting ready to race, the Run Reigate team have come up with a few alternative tips to help you on your way…

Get greased up

Lather yourself in vaseline before you start (including your feet), even in places that are unlikely to chafe – trust us it really helps! Turn yourself into a big slippery sea-lion.  Added benefits include sliding your way to the front of your pen.  If you suffer from hayfever, rub a big dollop on your nose as prevents the pollen from getting in.  

Go before you go

There are loads of portaloos.  Hundreds in fact, but they will still have a long queue in the hour before the race.  It is OK to stand in line, get to the front, do your business, then return to the end of the queue and repeat … 3 times.  You’ll be thankful for this cleanse when you see everyone veering off to the side as soon as they’ve crossed the start line to wee in public.  

On your marks, get ready … hang around a bit!

And you’re off … or not as the case will probably be.  Unless you are an elite runner, the start can be a bit of an anti-climax as you often have to wait 5-10 minutes to get across the start line and the pace can be a little slow.  Distract yourself by loudly humming “Eye of the Tiger”.

Resist the Rhino

There will be an urge to sprint past everyone in fancy dress.  Their attire can be deceptive.  The guy dressed as a giant penguin is actually an Olympic Triathlete and he’ll mess with your head by speeding up as you attempt to overtake him.  It may be a blow to your confidence to find a foam fire hydrant ahead of you at mile 18, but it makes for a good anecdote later.  Much later.

People power-ups

The closest many of us will ever come to feeling like we’re in the Olympics, is crossing Tower Bridge.  The volume builds as you run down Tooley Street, with an explosion of noise as you turn on to the bridge, people clapping, banging tubes and shouting your name.  If you have an unusual name, they might shout something else, but don’t heckle them.  It’s OK to wave at people and high five the kids.  Spectators – bring hand sanitiser.

Mind your step

Everyone who has run a marathon will tell you to watch out for the drinks bottles on the ground.  But seriously, do, and it starts early.  One of our team slipped on a discarded bottle at mile 16 of the New York Marathon, horribly tearing her hamstring.  Being the tough nut she is, she walked the remainder in agony, doggedly determined to earn that bloomin’ medal!  The gel packets are just as bad and slimey.  They sometimes stick to your trainer, forcing you to remove it whilst hopping ungainly, racers behind accidentally grabbing you in a hug as they crash into you.  

Where’s Wally?

It’s definitely worthwhile knowing where your supporters are going to be so that you can pick them out, quite literally, in a crowd.  Banners, signs, fancy hats, unusual cheers or just really really loud voices are useful.  Especially in the final stretch, when you’ve forgotten your own name.

Salty beards

Some marathon runners sport an attractive salt beard when they finish the race, which always looks good in the photos and can be a surprise to their partners.  Shows you’ve really worked hard!  Replace the electrolytes through gels and energy drinks during the race, and fish and chips afterwards.

You’ve made it!

Once you’ve crossed the line it really is straightforward.  Be gently pushed by the race marshals  towards your photo and bag and start crying with joy.  Have cosy clothes to put on even if it’s not cold, as you will be soon.  Have snacks in your bag too, not just with your family or friends as they might have eaten them.  Really, there should be a big conveyor belt at the end just like the airport, where you are collected by someone, preferably with a wheelchair and a bottle of prosecco in the arm rest cup holder.

Think Dalek

Avoid steps, at all costs.  If you must use them in the days pending the race, try sliding down like a toddler, as long as you have something or someone to pull you up at the end.  Ice baths are also recommended, but may result in weird noises coming from your mouth without your control.

Enjoy it!  

You’ve earned it.  Yes, it will be one of the hardest things you’ve ever done, but also one of the best.  The atmosphere and crowds are amazing and there is such a variety of people running that you’ll be continually inspired.   You might even be on the TV, so remember to smile, practise your crowd wave and of course, wear your Run Reigate finishers t-shirt for all to see.

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Air Ambulance needs you to Run Reigate


Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance are celebrating their Silver Jubilee during 2015 and are hoping that you will choose to Run Reigate and raise money to help them continue to save lives into the next quarter century and beyond.

An independent charitable healthcare provider working with the Ambulance Service (not part of the NHS), they are funded almost entirely by voluntary donations.

The service has grown from one helicopter serving Kent only, to two aircraft serving those in need of emergency medical help across Surrey and East & West Sussex, as well as Kent, 24 hours a day.

The team consists of at least one pilot and a minimum of one Specialist Doctor and one Critical Care Paramedic. Once they are at the scene, they provide all the expertise and equipment that you would normally find in an A&E department. Such rapid assessment and treatment is vital in the cases that the crew attends, and goes a long way to enabling positive outcomes in the most traumatic of incidents.

The charity are offering free places to those who can pledge to raise sponsorship of £50 (for the 10K) or £140 (half marathon). Or, if you have your own place, you can still help the Air Ambulance by raising as much as you are able.

All those choosing to raise funds for Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance through Run Reigate, will receive a charity running vest, promotional materials and a limited edition 25th Anniversary pin badge.

To find out more, click here or email Lauren Elphick laurene@kssairambulance.org.uk or call a member of the Community Team on 01622 833833.