Runner completes Marathon A-Z challenge



With more and more people embarking upon new and unusual physical challenges it’s not often that we hear of feats more inspiring than that of club runner Dave Keeley. This January he officially completed the 'Marathon A-Z' challenge he began in 1985.

The endeavour began after Dave, who runs with the Havering '90 Joggers, ran the Paris Marathon in 1985 and decided to combine his interests in running and travel. The rules for the challenge were simple: sponsors names were not included in the title and he used the name of the marathon, not the name of the place.

Recently completing the challenge with the Xiamen Marathon in China, Dave reflects on his 28-year journey:

"I learnt that you get out what you put in. Though even if you put in 100% of the training, you are only 80% of the way there as all sorts of things can go wrong in the last week, such as catching a cold (Oberelbe), getting injured (Quebec), excessive heat (a lot of them), flight cancellations and an erupting volcano.

Runners are decent people wherever you go in the world, as are most people. Runners speak a common language and there’s always something to discuss.”

Dublin Marathon in 1993 was the setting for Dave’s fastest marathon, a painful near miss of a sub-3 PB at 3:01 and a time that continues to haunt him. Quebec Marathon saw several near disasters, from a slip in a pothole to a tweaked hamstring and the temperature soaring to an uncomfortable 30 degrees. But despite the trials and tribulations of each race, Dave says he didn’t consider quitting and was set to see the challenge through to the end.

What’s next? "A few ultra events, including The Wall Run are on my list. I'd also like to run the Marathon du Medoc as bit of fun and the Land of the Midnight Sun Marathon in Norway.”

Here is the run-down of Dave’s Marathon A-Z: 

Race

Country

Date

Athens

Greece

November 2000

Bungay Black Dog

UK

April 1993

Cardiff

UK

October 2006

Dublin

Ireland

October 1993

Enschede

Netherlands

May 2001

Frankfurt

Germany

October 2008

Great Forest

New Zealand

May 2005

Halstead

UK

May 2000 and 2009

Isle of Wight

UK

May 2006

Jersey

Jersey

October 2011

Kent Coastal

UK

September 2009

London

UK

April 1987 (and more)

Maas/Meuse

Belgium

May 2010

New York

USA

October 1985

Oberelbe

Germany

April 2012

Paris

France

April 1985

Quebec

Canada

August 2012

Rotorua

New Zealand

May 1992

Shakespeare

UK

May 2002

Taunton

UK

April 2004

Utrecht

Netherlands

April 2009

Vienna

Austria

April 2011

White Peaks

UK

May 2007

Xiamen

China

January 2013

Yonkers

USA

September 2010

Zurich

Switzerland

April 2008

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Discuss this story

Amazing achievement and an awesome idea
Posted: 09/02/2013 at 13:28


FXF

Plain stupid.


Posted: 12/02/2013 at 08:24

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