Luke Yates is running the Brighton Marathon on 6th April in the name of Annabel's Angels. Here he introduces himself and why he chose Annabel's Angels as his charity of choice for the marathon donations. Over to Luke. "
I'm 40 years old and I'm a full-time professional photographer from Hythe, Kent. I met Denise in a friend's coffee shop, and knew instantly there was something a bit remarkable about her - I then got to know her and found out about her battle with cancer, and how she's helped encourage and support others through her connection with Annabel's Angels.
As Denise enthused about her experiences, her passion and drive for the work Annabel's Angels does soon wore off on me and left me wanting to help too. Cancer is something that affects everybody on the planet in some way, and we've had our own troubles and worries as a family. Anyone's wife, mother, daughter or friend could suffer from cancer, and it can be a lonely, scary business.
So when I got accepted for a place for the Brighton marathon last year, I knew straightaway which charity I should run it for!
Incidentally I never applied for the marathon - my wife (who ran the year before) did it on my behalf in secret and then when I got an email at work, she told me "Now you will know how it feels!"
Training I've been loving at the shorter distances - out in the fields with my music on I have been able to sort my head out on many a stressful day, and taken a real pleasure in the surrounding countryside. As we've approached the longer runs, half a marathon and beyond, my rapidly-ageing body has started to protest. I've had a few illnesses, colds and suchlike which really mess you up, pains in various bits of my body, and more recently I've had some more troubling lower-back issues, which needed to be sorted with physiotherapy.
Thankfully all is looking good now as we approach the final stretch, and I am really looking forward to the marathon experience, as I know the people there are massively supportive and friendly, and the atmosphere on the day is electric!