Sunday, 22 November 2009

The story so far (PART 4 - Looking forwards)

It's time to bring a close to this week's 4 part series of the "story so far". Over the last few days I've talked about why I chose the charities that I'm raising funds for, how I've been preparing for the mental battle and how well my training has been going over the first year.

There are just 16 months left until I set off from Huntington Beach, California on a 3100 mile run. Believe you me, there isn't a day that goes by where I'm not doing something associated with the event in order to make it a success. There is still loads to organise and plan but I'm sure that it'll all come together in 2010.


The first aspect that I need to devote more time to next year is the route planning exercise. I'm fortunate enough to have in my possession a very detailed route. I need to become more familiar with it, though, and reconcile the mileage for my own peace of mind. The sooner I'm able to publish this the better I think as people with then be able to see what a huge task running across the USA is. If they didn't already that is!!


One of the most important tasks I need to complete is to put in place the USA 2011 Run Geordie Run Support Team. I've already got the funding in place to accommodate them. i.e. in a Winnaebago. I'll step up the search for the team next year and should look to have it finalised by the end of the Summer of 2010. If you see yourself as a potential member of the team then please get in touch at


Throughout 2010, I'll be looking to spread the word about the run and seek as much good publicity as I can. The Journal newspaper have been very good so far as have In fact, I can safely say that with on board again, then this run is guaranteed to raise a lot of money for the 2 charities.

There is the possibility of appearing in Men's Fitness magazine next year. I'll have to be in better "shape" before this is to happen.

In the near future, plans are progressing for the first Run Geordie Run Roadshow. The first of which will involve me running on a treadmill for 8 hours or so in the Metrocentre, Gateshead. This will be a good opportunity to raise further funds and raise the profile of the run at the same time.

I'll be looking to produce more training diaries via You Tube next year which should make for good watching. A local PR company have offered to produce a short promotional film.

It would be brilliant if a production company could pick up on this run and follow me through 2010 and into the actual run in 2011. That's got to be worth doing don't you think? I'd want to watch something like that.


I'll be pleading to the world of commerce next year in order to try and broker deals similar to the Peter's Pies matching scheme. I'm not asking for outright sponsorship (although that would be nice). Instead, I'm looking to work hard for the commercial sponsor's money by only having it released if a personal donation is made first. I think this serves a few purposes. Most importantly, it encourages people to donate when perhaps they wouldn't have otherwise done. Using the Peter's Pies matching scheme as an example, knowing that £5 gets added to a £10 donation is a great incentive to donate. Add on top of this, the Gift Aid (where applicable) and the donation is just short of £20!

The current Peter's Pies matching scheme expires at midnight on the 31/12/2009. In the first 7 days of the scheme being up and running £200 has been donated in the form of t-shirt sales and traditional pledges. Peter's Pies have added £100 to that figure. I'll be going all out to try and get Peter's Pies to part with even more cash in the remaining 5 weeks of the scheme.

The good thing about this scheme is the fact that I'm constantly mentioning Peter's Pies as I look to attract new sponsors. They also got a good deal of exposure on last week. The matching scheme really does reflect well on Peter's Pies I think and is hopefully the first of many such schemes. Fingers crossed!

If you know of a company or small business who would like to contribute to the 2 charities under a similar deal then please get in touch at


First there were the Run Geordie Run t-shirts (they've raised nearly £1500 so far by the way!). Next up was the Run Geordie Run CD written and recorded by the Exiles (they've raised £200 so far).

I'm currently looking at the feasibility of other types of merchandise. If I had a £1 for everyone who said that there should be a Run Geordie Run calendar then I'd be a rich man. This one is a distinct possibility for 2010 and 2011.

Finally, the possibility of a book covering the run is also a possibility. I have a few good contacts who I'll be pursuing for advice. Watch this space next year for news on that front.


Oh yes! Training! That's the bread and butter of this event and things are about to get even more difficult next year. I'm currently putting together a schedule that focuses very much on running high mileage on consecutive days. I'll be running a maximum of the intended daily average mileage in the USA. i.e. 31 miles a day.

Roughly speaking in the first few months of 2010 I'll build up to 31 miles per day, say, for 2 days a week. The other days in the week will be the regular runs that I've spent the last year doing. The target is that by the end of the Summer in 2010 I'll be able to run 31 miles per day for 7 days. How I combine this with family life, work life and going to the match is an unknown at the moment!

2010 - A crucial year

So there we are folks. There is still so much to do as you can see. I'm sure I've not added a couple of things in this article which I may remember later too! 2010 is without doubt a critical year. It's the year where many aspects of the run should come together and give me a fighting chance of succeeding in 2011.