Paula completes epic run challenge
LAST year a Loughborough woman set herself the challenge of running 5km every day, for 365 days.
And, despite a torn calf and some difficult times, she has completed her last run and raised £1,800.
On Thursday, August 31, Paula Beniston, of Buckingham Drive, Loughborough, joined by a group of supporters, finished the 365 Run Challenge.
Paula decided to push herself with a year of non-stop running after meeting her sister and nephew through social media.
The runner did not know of her family members as she said her father moved away from the area.
While she was getting to know her family, she discovered that her teenage nephew Callum is in remission for neuroblastoma - a rare type of cancer of specialised nerve cells that mostly affects babies and young children.
It was after hearing how Wishes 4 Kids - a charity that grants a wish for youngsters in Leicestershire who are life limited, terminally ill, or have experienced life-changing traumas - had helped Callum go to Disneyland Paris that Paula decided to lace up her trainers and take on the challenge.
She told the Echo she wanted to raise funds to “give another family a chance to have a holiday” and “give something back”.
To date, Paula has raised £1,800 through sponsorship and donations.
She also hosted a virtual run - a self-motivated competition that is organised online - and a family fun evening at The Beacon Inn, Loughborough, which took place following her last run.
She told the Echo: “The last run was emotional and there was a good turnout of runners joining me.
“I’ve had a couple of injuries along the way and a torn calf.
“I did find it really tough after Christmas through to March, they were really long, dark months and I found it physically and mentally difficult.
“No one was donating and I was getting up early every morning.
“But I picked myself up and gave myself a good talking to.”
Paula says she has more money coming in and hopes her final figure will be around £2,500.
Despite not having rest for a year, Paula told the Echo she has more running challenges lined up.
She said: “I’ve signed up for my first marathon in October and a 24-hour run in September.
“I’ve also entered the London Marathon and should find out if I’ve been accepted in October.
“But I think I’ll have a nice rest after this!”
• Paula’s JustGiving page can be found at www.loughboroughecho. net/news/local-news/paula-take365th-run-complete-13550262
Pictured is Paula Beniston with her nephew Callum.
Paula Beniston with the group that joined her on her 365th run.