What is Del's 2019 Marathon Challenge?
My original charity challenge for 2019 was to run 3 races in London namely; CRUK London Winter Run (6.5 miles) in February, Vitality Big Half Marathon (13.1 miles) in March and the Virgin Money London Marathon (26.2 miles) in April. Having successfully completed the first 2 races and the London Marathon to come I extended the challenge to 5 races across the UK in total during 2019, and so I will be running;
* Virgin London Marathon (26.2 miles) - Sunday 28th April
* Simply Health Great North Run (13.1 miles) - Sunday 8th September
* Simply Health Great South Run (10 miles) - Sunday 20th October
In running a total of 5 races in 2019 I'm hoping to run all over cancer by raising funds for Cancer Research UK to help beat cancer sooner.
Why do I hate cancer?
Cancer is an equal opportunities killer in that it doesn't discriminate, it affects all ages, races and religions. At some point it will affect you, if not directly as an individual then it will hurt a family member or a friend. Like me you will hate cancer as it destroys the lives of people you love and care about. You will feel so helpless as they are robbed of their health and they disintegrate so rapidly in front of you, and you can do nothing to stop it. I lost my father Gurdial Singh Rathore and father in law Darshan Singh Bhatti to cancer, and in 2019 it has now taken my good friend Darren Gentle at 47 years of age.
The link between obesity and cancer
There is no immunity from cancer for anyone, and today doctors better understand than ever before that like smoking and drinking, obesity is a causal agent for cancer. Right now obesity levels in children and adults in the UK are at a record high, so we can expect an increase in cancer cases in years to come, unless.....we combat obesity whilst at the same time finding more effective cancer treatments and cures.
My own journey to beat obesity and hopefully cancer
I started the fight against my own morbid obesity by losing over 10st (140lbs / 60kg) in 1 year after gastric sleeve surgery in October 2014. By reducing my weight from 25st (155kg) to 15st (90kg), I have become healthier and fitter person no longer on any medication. To help others with obesity issues I set up my not for profit website; www.bariatricman.com. In the last 4 years I am pleased to say that through the website I have helped many people, in the main men between 30-55 years of age at risk from illness and death due to morbid obesity. Advising and mentoring them based on my own experience several have changed their lives forever. In fact some have told me, their surgery and my help has "actually saved their life". Since 2015 with improved health I personally have undertaken a number of physical challenges to test myself and raise funds for charity. These physical challenges are not something I could have ever contemplated a few years ago as I spent my days sat on a couch or in a car with high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels and back pain because of my morbid obesity. For some these challenges may seem ordinary but for someone aged in his mid fifties who was morbidly obese for over 25 years I think you'll agree they are of Herculean, as they include;
* 2016 - Climbing Mt Kilimanjaro & Mt Snowdon.
* 2017 - Climbing Scarfell Pike, Finishing Tough Mudder (10 mile run and obstacle course), Running The Gt. Eastern Run 1/2 Marathon (13.1 miles).
* 2018 - Running Loch Ness Marathon (26.2 miles), The Gt Eastern Run 1/2 Marathon (13.1 miles), Brighton 10K 1/4 Marathon (6.5 miles).
For all of these challenges I paid out of my own pocket to participate and people generously donated thereby allowing me to raise thousands of pounds for charities including; Sue Ryder, Cancer Research UK, The Princes Trust and HEAL (Health & Education for All). I have also undertaken smaller challenges like 10K runs and walks, as well as bike rides for; Make A Wish Foundation, Shine, Cruse Bereavement, East Anglia Air Ambulance and MLSS (Midland Langar Seva Society).
To summarise my challenge during 2019 is to run the following 5 races;
* 2019 - Running London Marathon (26.2 miles), The Gt North Run 1/2 Marathon (13.1 miles), The Gt South Run (10 miles), The Vitality Big Half Marathon (13.1 miles), The London 10K Winter Run (6.5 miles).
Thank you for reading this and for supporting my efforts.