Join our London Marathon team

Thank you for your interest in running the 2017 Virgin London Marathon for the Miscarriage Association.

The London Marathon is our biggest fundraising event in the year, bringing in over a quarter of our annual funding needs. It makes a huge difference in helping us provide support and information for anyone affected by the loss of a baby in pregnancy, and it also helps to raise awareness of how we can help.

Getting a place

There are two main ways of getting a place in the London Marathon:

Via the ballot  If you entered the public ballot (between 2 and 6 May), you’ll find out if you were successful or not in October, so you might also want to apply for one of our charity places as a back-up plan.

Apply for one of our charity places

Our charity places are all managed by a small company called CRunCH (Charity Runners Clearing House).  If you’d like a chance of joining our 2017 team, please visit CRunCHread through their information about running for charity and click on the Miscarriage Association link in the charity tab.

You’ll see that applying for one of our places means committing to raise a minimum of £1500, so you may want to take some time to think if this is do-able and how you might go about it (we know it’s not always easy!). If you’re OK with that, please do complete the application form and note that you found the information on this website.

We’ll start looking at applications towards the end of June 2016.

If you already have a place 

If you are fortunate enough to have your own place in VLM 2017 and would still like to be part of our team, please just get in touch.  We’ll be delighted to welcome you to Team M.A..

 

You can read Nicola’s account of her 2016 London Marathon here.

Nicola - ready to run!

Nicola – ready to run!

London Marathon 2016 photo gallery

Some comments from 2016

“Completing that marathon was truly one of the best days of my life and I enjoyed every second. I thought of my little ones throughout and had a smile permanently plastered on my face! I raised over £2800 in the end and it will be something I will be immensely proud if for years to come.” – Nicola

“Cheers to all that organised today and I hope we helped raised some much needed money and awareness. A great effort all round! Now where do I sign up for next year!” – Gareth

“I feel completely humbled and honoured to be part of such a wonderful team” – Aleisha

“Not my first marathon but by far my most meaningful. Glad to be part of such a great team” – Kerry

“In my starting pen I took my black bin liner off and revealed my MA running vest and the lady beside me saw it and burst in to tears. Before we started she explained that she’d had 5 miscarriages and had applied for the marathon as way to have something else to focus on. She had never heard about the MA, but assured me she would get in contact after the marathon as she felt like she needed support. She told me that she felt that meeting me on the start line was meant to be and thanked all of the MA runners for choosing such a great cause. I thought it was a clear example of exactly why the MA is a great charity and why we need to keep raising awareness.” – James

“Thanks MA for being so lovely. I cried a LOT at the finish, happy tears of course” – Michelle

“I would like to say a huge thank you to Ruth and everyone at MA for letting my brother and I fundraise for them and to be part of their great charity. The MA was a great support while on the run as well and brilliant with organising everything for us as the runners” – Chris

“Thank you so much for letting me run for your wonderful charity and well done to the whole team. I’m sure we raised a lot of money to help those so deserving of it” – Jo

“Just completing regardless of time is such a massive achievement and so great to have done for such a great cause and with all you wonderful people” – Rob

“Still on such a high! I just loved it – after being injured I just decided to forget about time and enjoy it – and I did! Was lovely to see some of you at the start and knowing there were friendly faces at mile 18 really helped. Well done to us all in raising so much money for this amazing charity. It was an honour to run for you” – Becky

“A day I won’t forget, proud to be part of such a fantastic experience for a great charity” – Alison

“Me and Andy had a blast. Such a special and amazing day for us personally, but we also got to raise money and awareness for such a worthwhile charity” – Lucy

 

Some comments and photos from 2014

Team member Carol McEvoy reflected on her experience:

Running the marathon, albeit injured, was amazing – something I would love to repeat one day. The knowledge that my run was to aid a charity, I wish I had known about whilst suffering 3 miscarriages on the trot, truly made it more gratifying – hopefully awareness of your cause has been raised and long may it continue to do so. 

Between them our 2104 team raised £50,216 in sponsorship, and we were able to collect a further £7,186 in Gift Aid – a wonderful total of £57,402.  As veteran M.A. runner Terry Axon (below) commented:

“I think everyone who runs a marathon does and should feel proud, it is a great achievement no matter how long it takes.  And a fantastic total for the M.A. – even in these hard times people are still willing to dig deep for good causes.”

Terry and medal

Here’s Hannah Ward, with proud husband:

Hannah and husband2And some of those who made it to the Cafe in the Crypt for some well-earned rest and refreshment –

Craig Watt (who ran for us again in 2015):

Craig WattLuke Sanders and his wife:

Luke and medalAnd Paul, another runner who ran in 2015 too:

Paul Harrison - done it!And if you’re wondering how runners rehydrate…

Rehydrating with a beer or two

Pictures and stories from our 2013 team

Niki Whitaker – done it!

Niki Whitaker

2013 was not supposed to be London Marathon year for me!  But after a 4th miscarriage in January, I decided to put my “good for age” place to good use and raise some money and much-needed awareness for the Miscarriage Association.

Training was a bit last minute, but very therapeutic for me.  It got me out of bed on the coldest, darkest and wettest of mornings and out pounding the streets.  It gave me time to think and also gave me a focus.  My hubby and my daughter were – as always – brilliant, laughing at the sheer craziness of me heading out for a long run in the snow 🙂

The day itself was amazing, my first London Marathon, and I will definitely be back again in the future.  The crowds were overwhelming, and I would go as far as saying the first 20 miles were great – I loved it!

The last 6 miles were a wee bit more challenging it has to be said, but the pain and suffering was nothing compared to that feeling of utter emptiness so many have experienced in the scan room.  And what got me through was simply doing something to help other people that have gone / are going through miscarriage, or will do in the future.  I know we ran through London, past all of these famous landmarks, but I didn’t see any of them!

The M.A. team supporting us at mile 18 was a very welcome pick me up – thank you all just for being there. And my hubby popped up at 4 points along the route to cheer me on.  I was soooo relieved to see that finish line, but what a day and what an achievement!  The goal was to raise some money, and to make people more aware of miscarriage, and we did it, Team M.A.!!! (And I got a Personal Best in the bag too, which was fab!)

Rachel Gribben

Having lost a baby myself, running the London Marathon for the Miscarriage Association was always going to be an emotional experience. It turned out to be more so than I could have imagined as the day before, my Nan passed away. But the show must go on (as they say) and I was so glad that I managed to finish.

No-one expects running a marathon to be easy, but it was much harder than I had anticipated. The last 8 miles were very very painful, I think in part because of the unexpectedly warm weather. After a truly awful winter, none of us were used to running in warm sunshine!

The support around the course got me through those 26.2 miles, including the MA team at mile 18 at which point I badly needed a lift. Everyone says that the support at London is amazing, but honestly, the number of people yelling my name was incredible! There were several points in the last few miles when I felt like walking and then someone would shout to keep going, and so I did.

Highlights were reaching halfway – when the band was playing Bon Jovi and I happened to get to them at the point they were singing “We’re halfway there”, running over Tower Bridge and past Buckingham Palace. And of course the very lovely (and heavy) medal I got at the end.

I felt truly awful for a while after I finished but managed to hobble to the MA meeting place to meet my family and the MA team for some much-needed food and a sit down.

I was honoured that the MA chose me to run for them, and very proud that I have managed to raise so much money for them, more than double the amount I originally pledged. I hope that I’ve done my bit to raise awareness of the work that they do. Would I run another marathon??? Maybe…

Pete Wharton

Taking part in the London Marathon 2013 was both a major achievement and challenge.

I chose the Miscarriage Association as a charity because of the miscarriage that my wife had on Christmas day 2011 and the upset that it brought to us both.  In addition to this, after speaking to other friends and family it made me personally more aware how regularly this tragic event happens and that people do not talk about it.

As a bloke my main duty was to support Jennifer and stay as strong as possible, knowing deep down how much I was hurting.  I spoke mainly to close friends and family until Jen had come to terms with things.  I had not heard of the charity at this point and therefore when I found out, it was a very simple decision and a small and personal way of both raising money for very important work and also and more importantly raising awareness of the event of miscarriage.

Raising the money was fantastic – speaking with people, being interviewed on the local radio and getting articles in the press made it a real pleasure.  Furthermore the support from the M.A. team was fabulous.  This all took my mind off the actual running which in the cold winter mornings was much needed!  There were times through the course of training when a poignant song would play on my iPod and I would find myself in tears but this made it even more special.  Just two days before the race, l nearly pulled out as a recurring torn calf muscle was back but I was too absorbed by everything and all the support which had been directed my way to let anyone down.

About a week before the race, Jen and I went out for a meal and actually had time to reflect on what we had both done and what I was about to do.  Jen had really supported me throughout the training just as I had tried for her in 2011 and the following week it would all be over.

I got to the start line nice and early on the morning of the race as I couldn’t sleep.  I chatted to loads of people and the common theme was the appearance of the big yellow sphere in the sky and no snow on the ground as no one has trained in temperature above 5 degrees in preparation!

The conditions were perfect and the atmosphere – I can honestly say I wasn’t expecting this.  It started with the 30 second silence in honour of the Boston Marathon and it was quite emotional standing on the start line thinking about that and what I was personally about to do and why.  The headphones went on and – we were off, part of the biggest marathon in the world.

The crowd was amazing from start to finish, from the chap on his Juliet balcony playing a DJ set, to the kids wanting high fives all the way round. The noise was something else and therefore the headphones lasted all of a mile and I decided absorbing this was part of the enjoyment.  The first 10km flew by but by Tower Bridge I was already feeling slightly tired and needing to hydrate and take on gels which generally I wouldn’t do until 16 – 18 miles.

At 18 miles there were some friendly faces from the Miscarriage Association and those promised jelly babies, although I did have to wait a few minutes for a new pack to be opened.  At this point I was on course to complete the marathon in less than 4 hours running with the 3.45 pacers.

This was all fine until 22 miles where all of a sudden I got cramp in one step from my thigh to my toes and then the next step the other leg went, I was like a statue and at that point I realised the last 4 miles were not going to be fun.  This happened three or four times in the last few miles and so I had to stop stretch, a short walk and then pick up the pace again.

It was at these points having people shout your name and encourage you was amazing and helped me so much.  At 25 miles  I suddenly heard someone shout my name and there was my sister in law with both my brothers and their wives and kids and my dad.  I had realised that I had missed my goal time and therefore ran back to them gave them all a sweaty kiss and cuddle and carried on my way with what seemed like fresh legs.  I then turned the corner to the home straight where I knew Jen, Millie, Herbie and my mum were watching.  Once I had spotted them, given them some big waves, and seen the poster Millie has made I knew I was home and dry.

The next few minutes were very surreal, I had a mix of emotion, firstly the joy of completing the marathon, the pain of hardly being able to walk and the massive annoyance that I had just run the marathon in 4hour 7 minutes and all of this culminated in me then bursting into tears and nothing actually coming out which was quite amusing.

I was given my medal and then hobbled down to get my kit bag.  The next challenge was finding my family with a phone rapidly running out of battery, which was similar to my legs.  Once I had found everyone the achievement began to sink in and both Jen and I had a massive cuddle with lots of tears.  We then strolled up to meet the rest of the team at the magnificent St Martin in the Fields.

It has been nearly two months since the VLM 2013 and I am in full training for my next event and looking forward to doing the VLM 2014, which is remarkable given I hated running in January when I started training for this year’s event.  On reflection the entire event which includes deciding to run the marathon, the training in generally freezing conditions, support from friends and family, the support through the race has been amazing and something I will never forget, but the biggest thank you has to go to my wife Jennifer and our two fabulous children. Without their support, words of encouragement, smiling faces and cuddles when things were tough I would not have got through this and the money raised is my way of continuing to support people who go through miscarriages.

I will never forget my first marathon and one thing I have learned is that so many people go through what Jen and I went through and through talking to people we have found it much easier to come to terms with and this is something I will take away with me for the rest of my life.  Thank you to the team at the Miscarriage Association – you do a fabulous job.

Simon Reid

Simon Reid

 

Running the VLM was by far the hardest thing I’ve ever done but also the most rewarding.

The first 12 or 13 miles were fantastic! The crowd were amazing and the streets were filled with music, dancers and a real carnival atmosphere.

The last 8 miles though were incredibly tough and it took every ounce of willpower to get me over the finish line. Knowing I overcame that level of ordeal though has made me realise that I’m capable of much more than I’d previously given myself credit for.

I’d recommend it to everyone!

Terry Axon

Terry Axon

This was my 11th straight London Marathon. I started running for the Miscarriage Association a couple of years ago through my sister who is one of the Trustees. This year was quite bad for me as my hamstring went at 15 miles (I had been having trouble since March so it was no surprise). Anyway I got round and I have my guaranteed place for 2014 so I will be there again.

I think everyone who runs a marathon does and should feel proud, it is a great achievement no matter how long it takes.  And a fantastic total for the M.A. – , even in these hard times people are still willing to dig deep for good causes.

Nick Brogan

Nick Brogan

Well done everyone and the MA team

I didn’t get to see everyone as the “sight seeing tour” took a bit longer than planned and by the time I had collected the family together meant we had to get home.

Really struggled from 13 onwards – mainly due to not taking too well to the Lucozade drinks early on despite using them before. I survived on jelly beans/babies and water thereafter.

Despite the pain and the mental torture it was an incredible and emotional (still is) day and the crowds were magnificent. Having the support at 18 helped drive me through the toughest spots in Canary Wharf.  I was fine thereafter but my time suffered as a result.

I said during the race never again but is it as got second time…..?

Well done to everyone for taking on such a huge commitment and winning!

Rosie Rimmer and Melanie Willis at the start

Rosie Rimmer

What an amazing day!! I loved every minute of it and managed to finish in 5 hours 4 mins so I’m pleased with that!  It was brilliant seeing the M.A. team at mile 18 for encouragement!