Running for British Heart Foundation: Gary’s story

Gary Jarvis will run the Edinburgh Marathon next year, raising money for the British Heart Foundation (BHF) in honour of his friend.

After being diagnosed with depression, Gary decided to start running to help him fight back against the illness. Starting with a modest quarter mile run around his block he is now preparing for his longest run to date.

From a run round the block Gary quickly progressed to running his local 5K parkrun in Ipswich. It was here that he met Jonathan Jenkyn (aka JJ), the inspiration behind his 2016 Edinburgh marathon fundraising.

On the morning of 22nd of August 2015, Jonathan completed the Ipswich parkrun before spending the day with his family. But that night in bed, Jonathan suffered a cardiac arrest. His wife Sacha was woken and managed to resuscitate him. The next 36 hours were touch and go but Jonathan has pulled through and is making a steady recovery after having a defibrillator fitted.

It was BHF’s ‘hard and fast’ CPR campaign featuring ex-footballer Vinnie Jones that had stuck in Sacha’s mind and reminded her how to react in this situation. To say thank you, Gary will be raising money for the BHF to continue its essential research.

More than 30,000 people suffer a cardiac arrest out of hospital each year but less than one in ten survive. Through the BHF’s life saving research and campaign to train the nation in CPR, the charity is committed to improving people’s survival chances.

Join Gary and make every mile count in the fight against heart disease. The BHF will support you every step of every mile. Join the #HeartRunners team at bhf.org.uk/edinburghmarathon.