This Sunday Sgt Craig Howes and Sgt Ayshae Howes will be running the Great North Run in combats and boots and carrying bergens with 40lbs and 20lbs of weight respectively, to raise money for the RAF Benevolent Fund. They are joined in their fundraising by Craig's children, Rhys, 11, and Abbie, 9, who will be taking part in the Junior Great North Run. Ayshae tells us more.
I am an Intelligence Analyst working within the Air Warfare Centre at RAF Waddington and Craig is a member of the RAF Regiment, currently serving at RAF Cranwell within the Officer and Aircrew Training Unit.
On my recent return to work after having two children fairly close together, I wanted to set myself a personal challenge and at the same time raise money for the RAF's leading welfare charity.
Being a close family who feel they have been well supported by the RAF, we decided to do this challenge together and get the older children involved as well. As Craig and I have both completed half marathons in the past, we decided we'd make it more challenging by asking for sponsorship. So Craig came up with the idea of boots and bergens!
Training for both Craig and I has involved lots of "tabs" out into the countryside and Rhys and Abbie have been dragging us out on runs around the fields whenever we're all together.
We're all really looking forward to the Great North Run weekend and Rhys and Abbie will be helping their little brothers Jackson and Joshua cheer us across the finishing line with RAF Benevolent Fund flags and banners. We're all hoping to raise about £1500 between us.
And as Craig's family are all located in Newcastle, we look forward to celebrating afterwards with a nice home-cooked Sunday roast. Then after a few weeks of letting the blisters heal, perhaps I will let Craig know what the next Howes' family challenge is going to be...
By Sgt Ayshae Howes