What a fantastic week! Paul Dunstan and I took on a challenge to run over a marathon a day, and play a game of golf each day, while running London to Paris, arriving at Le National- the venue for the 2018 Ryder Cup.
We accumulated 333km, and approximately 380,000 steps each, ate about 35000 calories each, and even placed second in the British Speedgolf Open pairs competititon.
Our first day, we met the founder of Golf in Society, Anthony Blackburn. The inspirational stories he shared of the difference physical activity, in this case golf , is making to so many lives made myself and Paul even more determined to complete the Ryder Cup Run. After some golf on the Driving Range, and the West Course at Wentworth (awesome!), we ran south from European Tour headquarters. As well as highlighting the work of Golf in Society (donations are extremely welcome here https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/GolfAndMentalHealth ) we would also promote the value of exercise for health, and in particular the World Golf Foundation’s Golf and Health project which I’m helping with for my PhD www.golfandhealth.org
The first day I was a physical wreck, partly due to a lack of sleep the 2 previous nights, and perhaps also the after effects of viral meningitis I’d contracted 3 weeks prior. Running with Paul and his girlfriend Lenka, I just battled through.
Day two say the British Speedgolf Open. Speedgolf is definitely a sport you should try if you like either running or golf. We love both, and particularly enjoyed Paul’s shot to the 18th belting the ball out of a puddle to 6 feet, and soaking himself at the same time.
Having run to the ferry in sunshine, we got a bit of a soaking in France for the first day. However some wildgolf made up for it, and after a few days golf and running, we arrived in Paris, running past the Arc de Triomphe, the Eiffel Tower, and the Palace of Versailles. Paul had battled with sore knees for the last three days but the sights and some fine French food took our mind of it.
Arriving at Le Golf National’s the bunting was out, and a game on the famous course awaited. It’s the venue for the next Ryder Cup in 2018, we arrived a year ahead of time!
I’d like to say a few thanks- big apologies to anyone I’ve missed out.
Golf In Society are pioneering dementia friendly golf, aimed at improving the lives of people living with dementia by introducing/ reacquainting them to golf. Their messages of support from the participants/ coaches kept us going https://golfinsociety.com/2015/11/10/uks-first-dementia-friendly-golf-club-launches-in-lincon/
To everyone for their support, kind messages and donations.
To Lenka and Joe for leading all the logistics, Dean for help driving, Yannick, Jimmy and Katinka for the welcome and support in France. Lenka also made a great website www.rydercuprun.com
To Merrell for providing us with all running kit. Top class as ever, the only blister I got was on my hand from playing golf.
To Wentworth, Le Golf National and the European Tour and its players, and Stance UK, and Freemans for supporting the effort.
And to Paul who was consistently excellent company and is still a mile better than me at golf.