When Corporal Jon Ward completed his first ever marathon back in 2007, he could never have imagined that 11 years later, he would be joining the exclusive 100 marathon club! In this guest blog, Jon tells us all about his fundraising challenge.
I ran my first ever marathon back in 2007 and chose to do London, as it's such an iconic race. It took me four hours and 56 minutes to complete and I thought that that would be it, I'd ticked it off the bucket list and I could move on to my next challenge.
Fast forward a few years and I was still really enjoying running. In 2015 I set my sights on joining the 100 marathon club. Once I'd got it into my head that was it, I started to make a plan. I knew I needed an end goal, so I decided that I would complete all 100 by April 2018, to coincide with the RAF centenary.
So far I've completed marathons in 17 different countries across the world, including Greece, America, the Caribbean and not forgetting The Falklands, whilst on deployment.
I'm now more than half way through my challenge and will be taking on my 75th race in Kent later this month.
For me this was a personal challenge that I felt very motivated to complete. Yes I have to fit it in around my job as a logistics mover, but what better way to mark 100 years of the Royal Air Force than with a 100 marathons?
I will push my body to the limits. From my first ever marathon, to now, there's been a dramatic improvement. My personal best has been 3:01, which meant I qualified for the Boston Marathon, so hopefully I'll be ticking that off the list soon too. I'm really focused on getting a sub three now.
I have been fortunate that I have never needed support from the RAF Benevolent Fund, but being a serving member of the RAF, I see first hand how the charity supports the entire RAF family, so it seemed like a natural fit for me to raise funds for them. And who knows, after I've completed this challenge my legs may give up so I may need their help after all!