Nine years ago, Katie lost her dad to suicide which, extremely worryingly, is the biggest cause of death in males under the age of 50 years old. Katie tells us that although her father struggled with alcoholism and depression, his death – understandably – still came as a huge shock to everyone who knew him.
Despite having to stay off her feet for four weeks after an unexpected operation in January, Katie’s training is going well and she says she is feeling “strangely emotional” about the London Marathon, which this year takes place on 24 April. She adds
“I’m really excited to run around my beautiful home city with the amazing crowd. The messages of support I’ve had on my Virgin Money Giving page have actually made me quite teary – even on some of the training runs!”
Over the past 30 years, the number of men taking their own lives has risen dramatically and charities like CALM exist to provide support to men whofeel under pressure and unable to talk about it with. CALM say
“We believe that if men felt able to ask for and find help when they need it then hundreds of male suicides could be prevented. We believe that there is a cultural barrier preventing men from seeking help as they are expected to be in control at all times, and failure to be seen as such equates to weakness and a loss of masculinity.”
Katie will have around 20 people at various spots along the course on race day so she says keeping a smile on her face will be important and when asked what will keep her going on the day, she says “confirmation of what the money I raised will be doing for CALM” before adding that the prospect of a cold gin and tonic will help too!
How you can help
You can support Katie’s important cause by donating to her Virgin Money Giving page and if you feel inspired by Katie’s challenge, you can set up your own fundraising page for the charity CALM.