Posted by: mads04 | January 31, 2014

London Marathon (what the f*** are you doing) Part 2

When I attempt this years London marathon I will have been living with Motor Neurone Disease for over 3 years. It’s been described by doctors as “the worst disease known to science” . Think of your worst nightmare and times that by a million and you may be half way there with what this disease does to people.
It destroys lives, not just the person living with MND but everyone around them. I’m one of the luckier people who have been unfortunate to get MND, I say luckier because I’m still alive and able to walk at the minute, how long that lasts for know one knows!
This years marathon poses new problems for me simply because it’s 12 months since I last attempted 26 miles. My body has deteriorated in the last year so much so that I can no longer raise my arms, my speech now sometimes makes me sound like Oliver Reeds love child and my legs are beginning to look like Olive Oils ( I needs to eat me spinach!!). I’ve also started wearing a neck brace around the house because my neck and shoulder muscles have all but disappeared but I’ll be honest here, it really works because since I’ve started wearing it, I’ve never looked back!!!
My breathing has slowly gone worse, and my biggest worry about doing a marathon is falling over because if I fall down my arms won’t be able to protect me and I’ll land flat on my face. Listen, know-one said it was going to be easy!!!!

I’ve been a bit busy this last week raising awareness for MND on TV, BBC Northwest done a piece on our football campaign and I was invited into Manchester United’s TV channel to help promote MND awareness in the game. I really enjoyed doing it all and the people at Man United were fantastic with me ( even though I’m a scouser!). Trying to raise awareness for a disease not many people know about can feel like banging your head against a brick wall at times. MND is still in its infancy in raising awareness, what I mean by this is most illness’s have a cause and you can point people in the right direction of how to help avoid certain diseases ie smoking can cause lung cancer but MND has no cause so you can’t really suggest ways to avoid it. We just have to keep trying our best to raise the profile of MND and hopefully one day a cure will be found.

I will be doing the marathon on April 13th which is a date that means a lot to me, my mum sadly passed away from cancer on this date so I’ll be saying a little prayer for my mum at the start line and I’m sure her spirit will see us through.

My mate Tony who ran it with me last year will be with me again, we enjoyed every part of it last time and I can’t wait to saviour the atmosphere again although it can be a bit demoralising when people dressed as rhinoceros’ and Orville the duck are bombing past you!!

This will be the first time anyone has ever attempted the London marathon twice with Motor Neurone Disease and hopefully it won’t be my last, for as long as I can I will keep pushing myself to do things people don’t think are possible to raise awareness and funds for this horrendous disease. I hope you will stick with me!

Thank you for your support

Stay positive and stay smiling

To be continued




  1. Hi Mark
    You have become a hero of mine, we both suffer the same disease, we both played over 300 games for our football clubs mine was Waterlooville now amalgamated with Havant in the then Southern League.
    I am still able to get about on my own to legs.just my speech and swallowing gone at moment. Raising awareness/ funds for MND (not to your scale though) just written to the 2 trophy semi final clubs Gosport and Havant& W,Ville about FOOTBALL v MND
    Keep strong
    Kim Manns

  2. Sir, you have the heart or a lion. I am truly inspired by your spirit.

    I wish you all the best


  3. […] PS If, like Drew and Tony, you have a soft spot or connections with clubs other than the mighty Arsenal .. (by far the greatest team, obviously .. ) but still large enough to have a match day programme then do encourage them to take part in our campaign. Just email if you want a copy of the ad or some help in contacting the club. If you want to read more about what Mark is doing you can follow him on Twitter  @lastofadying1 or read his blog […]

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