Great North Run welcomes local runner - Fundraising for National Mind

Caption: Andrew describes running as a hobby
Caption: He hopes to compete in Marathons soon

This Sunday Andrew Davison from Middlesbrough will be taking part in the Great North Run, His fourth half marathon.

He decided to pick Mind for his chosen charity and explains that he fully agrees with our vision to not give up on anyone experiencing a mental health problem and give them the right support and respect.

We were really pleased Andrew decided to pick Mind as his charity and so we asked him a little bit more about how running has helped him personally and also some advice for anyone starting up running.

From a young age Andrew has always been a keen runner.

“My Dad encouraged me to get into running when I was younger. I went on to join a local running club and met new friends with similar interests.”

Andrew now runs in his spare time as a way of staying fit and healthy. The north east features a great mixture of places to run such as the country side, the city life or even the seaside so Andrew can always find a place to run.

“I love varying my routes when I run, the North East is perfect for this. I can go from hilly off road routes, to running miles along the beach. The beach is probably my favourite place to run, running on the sand takes away some of the strain from running on the pavement and it can also be quite relaxing running by the sea”.

Andrew believes that taking up running can definitely benefit and stimulate the mind. If anything is worrying him, a short run relieves his stresses and he can feel his mood is improved for the rest of the day. Not only does running help him mentally, he believes running always gives him more energy to do other activities.

“The feeling of improving and increasing your fitness is a constant result of running and this can also help the mind as you gain a sense of achievement.”

So we asked Drew any advice he’d give for anyone thinking of taking up running!

• I would definitely encourage people to join a local running club, it gives you the motivation to train harder and it also allows you to meet new friends.

• Another option is to take part in your local 5k park run, these are free events all over the country which start at 9am every Saturday. The park run is open to runners of all abilities and is a great way to track your progress with your results being posted online.

The Great North Run will welcome thousands of runners, joggers, walkers, elite athletes and fancy dress heroes.

On Sunday Andrew hopes to beat his best time which is currently 1hr 18mins 5 sec. We think it’s so inspirational to do running as a hobby but also compete in well-known marathons while fundraising.

“I would definitely like to raise money for Mind again in the future”

Andrew’s next aim is to take part in a marathon so he would definitely make an opportunity to raise even more for Mind! He agrees that next time he’d like to raise money for his local Mind charity which of course is Middlesbrough and Stockton Mind.

We wish Andrew the best of luck on Sunday and you can watch the Great North Run on BBC One from 9.30am.

Andrew has beaten his target of £300 but if you would like to make a donation, click here!

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Middlesbrough and Stockton Mind is the business name of Middlesbrough Mind Limited. Registered Charity No. 1118098. Company Limited by Guarantee No. 5884630 in England.