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Manish’s fundraising story: running for Shout got me over the finish line

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Manish had been aspiring to run a half marathon for the last two and a half years.

He’d always been a runner, but had only ever run a maximum of 8km.

To get the extra motivation he needed to pull it off, he decided to fundraise for Shout - and also do the 21km run in Portugal!

When the going got tough - like on race day in Lisbon, when temperatures soared to 28C - knowing that he was running to fundraise for Shout kept him going.

In the end, Manish raised an incredible £415 for our service.

Thank you Manish for your support 💙

Here’s his story.

What motivated you to fundraise for Shout?

When I set out on deciding what charity to fundraise for, I knew it had to be one which provided an accessible platform for all. The ability to be able to contact someone at any time of the day can be invaluable.

Living in London as a young male, I know too well some of the pressures that fall on us.

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Countless statistics show men are less likely to access mental health services and the free, confidential text messaging service Shout provides is the exact reason I chose to fundraise for them.

In addition, I work in a hospital trust and the recent Covid pandemic has had a real unseen impact on the mental health of key workers. Shout has been one of a handful of charities and services which have set-up a quick and accessible designated service.

How did you decide what sort of challenge to do?

I've always been a keen runner but would usually run 5km in distance at any one time. I was eager to increase this distance, and the half marathon provided the best excuse to do so.

Not only that, we decided to do one in another country! Coming into the year, my furthest run had been 8km. I managed to get this up to 16k in training before tackling the gruelling 21km on race day.

"I aspire to run a half marathon..." Was a response to one of my interview questions for my first ever job. 2.5 years later, I still work in the same hospital trust and have finally managed to fulfil this ambition of mine.

What was the toughest part of the challenge you set yourself?

Staying motivated in training was tough at times, but my two training partners really helped me push through some of the training runs and I can't thank them enough for the support they have provided.

The weather on race day was HOT. Nothing could quite prepare me for the temperatures rising towards 28C on the streets of Lisbon.

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Those final few kilometres were mentally tough, but one of my motivations for getting to the finish line was my fundraiser for Shout.

What was your highlight?

Training was the real highlight of the whole process. It provided a great excuse to meet friends at least once a week. I joined the park run community which has been a rewarding experience in itself, and I will endeavour to get to as many as I can this year.

I was also able to adopt a healthier lifestyle which has had a positive impact on both my physical and mental health.

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What are your top fundraising tips?

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Do it for something or someone you are passionate about - this will help you get through all the tough times you encounter on your journey.

Set yourself a challenge that you think you will enjoy. I knew I liked running and I am a huge athletics fan, so running was never seen as a chore to me, which really helped keep me motivated.

Most importantly just have some FUN!

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Fancy running a half marathon for Shout too? Or maybe you'd like to take part in a challenge event or birthday fundraiser?

Thanks to our incredible fundraisers, our service can operate around the clock, being there for people in their greatest time of need.

  • £10 can help someone in distress access 1 hour of support
  • £25 can help us reach communities that need help the most
  • £250 can train a volunteer to take life-saving conversations
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