£5,000 and counting…!

Excited (although somewhat belated) news to share with you all – I’m very proud to say that we have reached the half way point in our fundraising objective. Yes that’s right, we have hit the £5,000 mark. In fact we hit it on New Year’s Day, thanks to a very kind donation from a Mr John Shinnick, someone who has been supporting the challenge project from the start. Delayed update I know, but with marathon training & work being incredibly busy I’ve had little time for anything else.

The [21:21] challenge project set out with one main objective, to raise £10,000 for Help for Heroes. Its secondary objective was to get as many new people thinking about the charity, and hopefully inspiring them to do their bit. A little over a year ago I could not have imagined how well that objective could have come on in just 12 months. We’ve gained the support and sponsorships of some great organisations, and amassed over 500 online followers – not to mention the amazing work that friends & family have done to help us along the way.

I’m not going to shy away from the fact that the journey thus far hasn’t been an easy one. At the end of 2010 I was definitely not a sportsman, nor was I terribly active if truth be told. With numerous smaller incidents, and 2 injuries that have literally stopped me in my tracks, from training, competing in & completing challenges, the physical elements alone have sometimes made me question what the hell I was doing. We still laugh at home about the fact my brother went to war in Afghanistan and came back with less physical ailments than what I’ve had over the last 12 months.

But while the physical problems have not been ideal, it’s been the mental side of things that have been the biggest challenge for me. I remember Polar Explorer, Inge Solheim, saying that his challenges were made up of a mixture of 80% physical determination & 40% mental determination, because 100% just isn’t enough. OK, so I’m hardly about to compare myself to someone who has trekked to the North Pole with a group of wounded servicemen, but I like the sentiment behind what he said.

I remember all too well reaching the 6 mile point during my first half marathon, thinking to myself that I’m not even half way yet, or remembering the elation felt after Ben Nevis, but the utter dread of starting Scafell Pike not even half way through the National Three Peaks. And I’m sure I will be feeling physically sick on Friday as the Burj al Arab is still far in the distance, knowing that reaching it will only be half way around the Dubai Marathon route.

But, there’s a lot to be said about hitting the half way point. You’ve built a great foundation for completing your challenge, whatever it might be. There’s an elation of getting half way, knowing that each step you take past that point you’ll be nearer to the finish than the start. Reaching the half way point gives you that extra boost to carry on – I mean, you’ve achieved so much already, it would be silly to quit now!

So as we start 2012 and the second half of the challenges, and tilt over into the second £5,000 we’re aiming to raise – quitting isn’t even in our vocabulary, let alone an option. Everyone that has helped support financially, physically and emotionally has put their faith in me to finish this through to the end, and I’m sure as hell not going to disappoint them now.

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Help for Heroes [21:21] Challenge

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About benjonlambert

Mountain climber, marathon runner, Olympic torchbearer & ACF instructor amongst other things: "Success never came to those who weren't ready for a challenge"
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