A HUNTINGDONSHIRE athlete will be going to extremes to help raise money for The Hunts Post s New Life Appeal. Ian Marshall is not only preparing to run the Flora London Marathon this April, but will also take part in the Iron Man Triathlon in Switzerland
A HUNTINGDONSHIRE athlete will be going to extremes to help raise money for The Hunts Post's New Life Appeal.
Ian Marshall is not only preparing to run the Flora London Marathon this April, but will also take part in the Iron Man Triathlon in Switzerland in July.
The super fit 29-year-old, who is a member of Huntingdonshire Athletics Club, based in St Ives, plans to complete the marathon in less than three hours and then go on to the 12-hour triathlon, which demands that entrants swim nearly four kilometres across a lake, cycle 112 miles on hilly roads and finish with a 26-mile run.
Mr Marshall, who is hoping to raise £1,000 for the appeal, said he was inspired by his sister's children who were treated at the special care baby unit (SCBU) at Hinchingbrooke Hospital.
The Hunts Post is raising £70,000 for maternity services at the hospital, including money to buy new equipment for SCBU.
Mr Marshall, a BT engineer who lives in Wyton, said: "My mum and sister asked me if I would raise some money for charity, and suggested the special care baby unit (SCBU) at Hinchingbrooke. My nephew and niece both spent time in SCBU. My nephew Ryan was born very premature and spent the first nine months of his life in SCBU, receiving round the clock care, by a great team of specialists.
"My sister had to sleep on a bunk bed. The hospital wants to build a room where parents can stay and I want to support that.
"The special care baby unit wants to use the money to purchase new equipment, updating some of the machines that have been used in the unit for years. The wish list includes new incubators and intensive care monitors - essential kit for sick babies.
"I have run half-marathons before but this is the first time I have tried to raise money for charity - I don't like asking people for money but this is such a good, local cause."
Mr Marshall's sister, Alison, has had two of her three children treated in special care at Hinchingbrooke.
Her son, Ryan was born 10 weeks early in May 1997. He suffered from lung disease, cerebral palsy and brain damage. Ryan spent his first nine months in the special care baby unit but died aged four in September 2001.
Ms Marshall's daughter, Olivia, now eight, was born four weeks early and was treated in special care for two weeks. There is also an older daughter in the family, Alisha, 15.
Mr Marshall, a former St Peter's School pupil, took part in the Great North Run last year, completing the 13 miles in one hour, 24 minutes. He is hoping to complete the London Marathon in three hours. He is seeking joint sponsorship for both.
INFORMATION: Sponsor Ian Marshall at www.ianmarshall.co.uk