Do you struggle for motivation to run throughout the darkest months of winter? Well Montane Lakeland Family and Sunderland Strollers legend Tony Allen is here to help!
If you don’t know already, Tony Allen set up a Facebook group called Run Everyday December (RED) with his friends three years ago. The idea was based on December being a ‘nothing month’ with very few races and motivation at an all time low. Tony thought it would be fun to have his mates running every day of the month.
The rules are simple:
- Run the minimum of a mile each day to a maximum of your desire.
- Post your exploits to the FB page and encourage others.
The take up was astounding with a mixture of running abilities from Ultra Lakeland runners to first time runners. From day 1, from all over the UK and across the world people posted their efforts and there was/is a real sense of community. The page provides a platform to encourage and share advice with each other. Many of the first timers have since gone on to complete marathons and ultra’s and the page has seen many friendships develop.
Tony is known on the page as ‘RED One’ and during the first year he ran an average 10 miles a day which including 3 marathons during the month. The following year Tony managed 31 consecutive 16 mile runs after a day at work which inspired others and raised thousands for his local hospice in Sunderland.
Last year Tony’s plan was to run 31 consecutive marathons after working a 10 hour shift with a 2 hour commute. It’s no surprise that Tony accomplished this and just for good measure he ran a 31 mile ultra on the final day. The distance covered by Tony was 817 miles which is the equivalent distance from Sunderland to Milan. Tony would start at 8:30pm and the run would take between 4.5-5 hours to complete. Even the strong winds and adverse weather were not enough to stop him. Astonishingly Tony managed a averaged 3 hours sleep per day. Tony managed to raise £10,000 for the hospice and had huge media coverage which saw support in Dublin from Caroline Corr and in the UK from Paula Radcliffe. His running club the Sunderland Strollers (who manage Checkpoint 3 at Wasdale Head) and other Lakeland 100/50 runners would join him for support.
This year Tony had planned on running 50 miles a day around Europe which in his words is much easier than 26 miles a day following a 10 hour shift. Unfortunately, a torrid chest infection which started in May and is only just clearing up has thwarted that plan. Tony does however plan to join in ‘sensibly’ with the aim of getting some miles in for next year’s Montane Lakeland 100 event.
The group already consists of many Lakeland 100/50 runners and is a great way to stay motivated, share stories and make friends. If you are not already part of the group, then please join the RED challenge and share your story this year. Running every day in December will be a great way to motivate yourself throughout the darkest months and it’s another step of your 2017 #LakelandJourney. You can say hello to Tony and join the RED group by CLICKING HERE.