Personal trainer to attempt Ironman Triathlon in his garden to raise £1,000 for St Richard's Hospital

What would you do if an event you had been preparing more than half a year for had been cancelled?

Wednesday, 29th April 2020, 4:49 pm
Updated Wednesday, 29th April 2020, 5:04 pm
Rob Dunlop is attempting to raise 1,000 for St Richards Hospital where his mum, Alison, works as a nurse

That was the situation Rob Dunlop found himself in this week when the Ironman Triathlon in Nice, France was cancelled due to the coronavirus. But instead of cutting his losses, the personal trainer from Aldwick is going to complete the challenge from home on Saturday, May 9.

Rob, 30, who is attempting to raise £1,000 for St Richard’s Hospital — where his mum, Alison, works as a nurse — has so far reached £490.

He added: “Originally I wasn’t going to raise anything as I didn’t have anything close to my heart at the time.

Using a swimming pool borrowed from one of his clients and a turbo trainer, Rob will swim for an hour and a half before cycling 112 miles

“It got called off about three/four weeks ago and it was then quite hard to stay motivated. I had been training for the best part of six to seven months worth of hard graft.

“I had seen a few ideas on the Ironman forums on Facebook that guys had been doing in the garden and, having seen my mum extremely stressed with the amount of pressure there is in hospitals, I thought I’d give it a go in the garden.”

Rob said St Richard's has 'always been a fantastic hospital' that has 'always provided a high standard of care'.

On his fundraiser page, Rob wrote: "My mum has always felt supported.

Rob will attempt to run 26.2 miles round his garden for the third and final part of the challenge

"She has always been so proud to work at the hospital, and it has felt like a big family. I had the experience of being a patient there and would to contribute something back for everyone’s hard work."

Using a swimming pool borrowed from one of his clients and a turbo trainer, Rob will swim for an hour and a half before cycling 112 miles. He will then attempt to run 26.2 miles round his garden.

“Everyone I speak to thinks I’m absolutely mad,” Rob said. “People ask why I don’t run round the roads but I wouldn’t be sticking to the government’s rules. You’re not helping the hospital if you’re running outside for four/five hours.

"I stopped training for about three weeks so that will make it that little bit harder.

“It’s going to be extremely tough but a day’s worth of agony is going to be well worth it. I was always going to go at it again next year but I thought why not put what I’ve got to good use at the moment.

“Mum will be at home, cheering me on and we will be Facebook living it, getting everyone behind me. It will be a good occasion.”

A message from the Editor, Gary Shipton:

In order for us to continue to provide high quality and trusted local news, I am asking you to please purchase a copy of our newspapers.

With the coronavirus lockdown having a major impact on many of our local valued advertisers — and consequently the advertising that we receive — we are more reliant than ever on you helping us to provide you with news and information by buying a copy of our newspapers.

Our journalists are highly trained and our content is independently regulated by IPSO to some of the most rigorous standards in the world. But being your eyes and ears comes at a price. So we need your support more than ever to buy our newspapers during this crisis.

Stay safe, and best wishes.