On the 1st January 2015 Chris Croshaw started on a challenge to run 2015 miles before the end of the year to raise awareness of the plight of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) sufferers.
Chris, from Gateshead, tells us more about his challenge…
The inspiration behind this running is my wife, Jocelyne, who three years ago was diagnosed with this debilitating illness. It has changed our lives beyond anything we could have imagined, and with no recognised cure, it’s a battle with no end in sight.
ME/CFS is often seen as an invisible illness as outwardly sufferers may look fit and healthy. This often hides a vast number of different issues, around fatigue, exhaustion, muscle and joint pain, sleep disturbance, poor memory or concentration to name just a few. There is still an ongoing struggle, in some quarters, to get this recognised as a real illness, with some thinking it a psychological issue.
Our experience so far has confirmed it is very real. Jocelyne was a confident, outgoing and very active person. Since this illness took hold, there are some days she is barely able to get out of bed. Leaving the house is sometimes too much of a struggle to contemplate. Fortunately she doesn’t suffer as much as some who are completely bed bound.
When my wife was diagnosed I wanted to do something that would in some way help. I signed up for a half marathon and chose to raise money for our local charity ME North East. I’d never run before so my challenge was to get a point where I could complete the distance. That was 3 years ago and I’ve since completed a number of half marathons raising over £1300 in the process.
Recently I wanted to take on a more extreme challenge which I hoped would let me experience a tiny element of the fatigue and energy issues sufferers face. I decided to take on the challenge of running 2015 miles in 2015.
This challenge is primarily to raise awareness of this terrible illness although I am hoping to raise some funds for four charities;
In 2013 The North East HUB (Donna) did a zipwire to raise money for ME and we fully support Chris with his challenge.