The 555 Challenge

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The 555 Challenge

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... It has been 5 years since Chris Ajala passed away, which has inspired Louise Ajala and her cousin Paul Honey to undertake the 555 Challenge – 5 events in 5 months to raise £5000 for the Cardiomyopathy Association to remember the drive and determination of Chris

The first 4 events of Louise’s challenge will be in the heat and humidity of Dubai, whilst Paul will be braving the cold and rain of winter in the UK, before we take on the final and biggest challenge of all together, the LONDON MARATHON 2015

This blog is a personal diary of the challenge for ourselves but also to hopefully entertain, inform, possibly even inspire all those that read it and encourage you to support the cause with your feedback and maybe even the odd donation

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The final challenge before Lo...

By Louise ... On Friday 27 March I undertook my 4th challenge of my 5, the ABRaS Mina 10KM race.  The race was in the grounds of the Mina Seyahi and Westin hotel and consists of 3 loops of a 3KM route.  I have never run a race that requires a repetition...

A Hot, but Happy, Honey Monster

By Paul ... I have had a growing curiosity about running in fancy dress ever since I ran the London Marathon in 2013. On my ballot entry that year, I had a predicted time of 5 hours as I had no idea how fast, or even if, I could run 2 miles, let alone 2...

Twas the night before Sweat-Mas…

By Paul ... Thanks to the incredible generosity of friends, family and work colleagues, we passed the midway target for the 555 Challenge today, with £5000 raised and still 5 weeks to go until the London marathon finale! It also means that I will be ful...

On the Mend – at last!!

By Louise ... As you know I have been suffering with shin splints (medial tibia stress syndrome) since the New Year and desperately trying to re-hab it and train around an injury. I have been limiting the impact work to once a week only on the long run ...

Don’t Tell ‘Em About The Hone...

By Paul ... Both Louise and myself have now completed 3 of our 5 challenges, and whilst the London Marathon will inevitably be a great final mountain to climb, I’m confident we will both achieve it. The primary motivation of the 555 Challenge though is ...

Random Ramblings on those ‘Lo...

By Paul ... So we are now approaching the business end of training for the 555 challenge grand finale – the London Marathon. 8 weeks tomorrow, both Louise and myself will be lining up with 40,000 other lunatics in Greenwich to put our minds, bodies and ...

Louise’s Challenge 3 – 13 mil...

By Louise ... On Friday 13 February, I undertook my challenge No 3 which was the Ras Al Khaimah Half Marathon.  It’s been heating up in Dubai and as the thermometer hit 36 degrees earlier in the week this added another challenge to the event. I have bee...

Not bad for a fat lad!

By Paul ... One of the things I am trying to achieve with my 5 challenges is to experience and blog about as many aspects of long distance running as possible, ticking a few firsts off the bucket list as I go. Challenge 3 brought me to the Melbourne Mus...

Challenge #2 for Louise compl...

By Louise ... Yesterday I undertook my second challenge; the Standard Charter Dubai Marathon 10K. I have to say that I was worried as I have been struggling with an injury and 24 hours before I was hobbling round my apartment desperately hoping the 2 ho...

A new challenge, and more gen...

As Louise mentioned, her second challenge is just 24 hours away, running the 10km road race which forms part of the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon tomorrow. After my adventure in the French Alps, I have decided that I should try to head to the other ...

Running is for everyone, no e...

By Louise ... It’s less than a week to my second challenge and I am now training full time.  Day one of being a full time athlete looked something like this !!! Clearly this career change has its limitations. I have managed to sustain an injury called ...

The cold never bothered me an...

By Paul ... Challenge 2, La Guisanette in Serre Chevalier, was duly completed on Sunday, and a challenge it was indeed, though it was not quite the ‘Frozen’ trail that Iexpected it to be. The day started early as the race kicked off at 8.45am, so myself...

My New Year Resolution? … Don...

By Paul ... Happy New Year to everyone, we hope you all saw in 2015 in style and have a great year ahead. So, it is that time when the gym is packed once again with the well intentioned New Year resolutioners and dinners are being served in our house at...

Gut Busted!

By Paul ... My first event of the 555 challenge is complete after running the Gut Buster 2014 10 miler this morning in 1:28:26. First things first, thanks to the guys at mysportingtimes.com, and the event sponsors Runners Retreat, for an extremely well ...

Stocking Fillers

By Paul ... Happy Christmas to anyone reading our blog, we both hope you had a fantastic festive day yesterday, and thank you for your interest in our fund raising challenge and support over the next 5 months. Xmas day obviously counted as a ‘non-traini...

Raising Awareness of the CMA

By Louise ... The 555 challenge has additional meaning for me and an important part of the challenge is to continue to raise awareness of the CMA and the great work that they do.  Chris was looked after by Dr William McKenna a Professor ofCardiology at ...

‘Running in Trail Shoes’ Less...

By Paul ... A simple lesson but one I learnt the hard way today … When transitioning from a gravelly tow path to a boggy field on the other side of the canal, don’t assume the bridge in between will react in a similar way to the trail shoes’ grip. Slick...

New shoes

By Paul ... Congratulations to Louise for kicking the 555 challenge off last weekend with a half marathon PB. I have no doubt that with her steely determination and absolute dedication, her times will continue to keep crashing down over the next 5 month...
By Louise ... So the good news is that the first challenge is completed and in a time of 2 hrs 15 mins and 3 seconds. A total of 6 minutes faster than last year. Yiiiiiiippppppeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!!!!!! The day started at 3.30am this morning with the alar...

Less than 24 hours to go!!!!

By Louise (December 4th) ... It’s less than 24 hours before I undertake the first of the races for the 555 challenge. This time tomorrow I will have completed 21 KM around Dubai, will have had my post-race breakfast and hopefully will be a happy indivi...

Homer’s Song of the (Sofa) Si...

By Paul (December 1st) ... One of the bonuses of running a marathon for a charity is the added support that they provide in helping you prepare and succeed in both the run and the fund raising effort. The Cardiomypathy Association for whom Louise and my...

Out and About in Dubai

By Louise (November 26th) ... On a Friday (my weekend is Friday and Saturday) I am normally up at 5am to run with the Creek Striders.  The runs are great and the people are even better.  I have seen more of Dubai on these runs that I have, driving aroun...

The vest’s virgin outing, and...

By Louise (November 14th) ... After reading Paul’s post about how he trained for his first marathon,  I have also been reading his recommended book “The non Runners Marathon Trainer”. I have to say it’s a great read and what I have been most inspired by...

Cocktails & Ice Creams

By Paul (October 31st)... Long before the 555 challenge was conceived, our annual family vacation was already in the diary for the October half term break and it is fair to say it is not proving the most effective winter training break where running is ...