Ex-soldier using love of football to boost fundraising
Ex-soldier Matt is taking on the London Marathon to raise money for our charity but, before he faces the 26.2 mile run he will be collecting money at Colwyn Bay's final game of the season in a bid to boost the money he has raised already.
Matt, who is 41-years-old and from Colwyn Bay, has previously completed a row-a-thon and organised a charity football match to raise money for us.
Matt, who supports Colwyn Bay FC will be at their local derby against Llandudno FC on 15 April. He says:
“This is a great opportunity to raise a few more pounds for this amazing charity before the marathon while also witnessing the Bay raise the winner’s cup for coming top in this season's league!”
“I’m a local lad and I served in the Royal Army Medical Corps for 23 years as a combat medical technician. I was deployed to operations all over the world including Iraq and Afghanistan.
“Having seen first hand the devastating injuries suffered; I decided to raise money for Blind Veterans UK. I’ve treated people over the years who have lost their sight; this charity has a base where I live in North Wales where they do absolutely incredible things for our ex-Service men and women regardless of whether they lost their sight while serving or later in life."
Matt has run four marathons before, but this will be his first London Marathon. He says:
“This is a tough marathon to train for because you’re mostly training in the winter months when it’s dark, cold and wet. It’s been hard to get the motivation to go out after work when the daylight has already disappeared.
“My aim is to get myself fit enough to enjoy the day and to ensure I do my best for all those that are already donating towards Blind Veterans UK, this is what is motivating me.
“I started training the first week of December and I’m running around 50km a week. I’m not going to win the marathon and I’ve no specific time in mind, I just want to have fun and not be in pain!
“In the military, looking after your fitness and training are part of the job. I’d train three or four times a week in work time. When you leave you need to learn how to be a civilian, your habits change, and I was no longer looking after my fitness.
“Being awarded a place in the London Marathon to represent Blind Veterans UK has changed that and I now can’t go more than two days without a run. I’m enjoying it and I want to keep it going.”