FITNESS fanatic Gary Wickett is channelling his inner action man to take on over 40 tough challenges throughout 2017.
The 32-year-old from Solihull has signed up to the physically demanding task of completing a range of running challenges this year, from 10k races to full marathons and even a triathlon.
The personal trainer, based at the David Lloyd Club in Solihull, started running to get fit and lose weight.
He quit his sedentary job of over 12 years and decided to pursue a career in fitness, in the hope of helping others and gaining a sense of job satisfaction.
He said: “I caught the running bug and since then I am always booking onto events to try and challenge myself.”
Last year Gary completed 28 events including half marathons, obstacle course races and trail runs.
This year he wants to take on even more events, between forty and fifty in total – and the more grueling the challenge the better.
He added: “I will be running several marathons this year as well as lots of half marathons and extreme obstacle course races. I want to test my limits.”
This year, Gary is running for Meningitis Now, the UK’s largest meningitis charity.
He chose to fundraise for the charity to help and support his friend Becky Doyle, who has gone through the hard times that meningitis brings.
He added: “My heart went out to their story. Running for this cause is the least I can do for such an inspiring family.”
Gary only started running just over two years ago, so he still considers himself an amateur runner, although he has achieved so much already.
“From being overweight and unfit to being in the best shape of my life, my goal is to complete 100 half marathons ASAP.
“The World Marathon Majors are also on my bucket list!”
Event fundraiser for Meningitis Now Kirsty Owen-Hayward added: “We are so thrilled that Gary has chosen to support us.
“As a charity we are completely reliant on donations, so Gary’s epic challenge will help to raise much needed funds to continue the vital work of Meningitis Now.
“This challenge isn’t easy, but we know that action man Gary can do it!”
Gary’s next event will be the Taunton half marathon on April 2, followed by another eight action-packed months of running, culminating in the ‘Christmas Cracker 20k’ in December.
“I am investing a lot of time, energy and commitment into these events and I hope that my challenge inspires other people,” he continued.
“I love to run, and to raise money and awareness doing something that I enjoy gives me huge satisfaction.”
You can sponsor Gary by visiting his JustGiving page www.justgiving.com/meningitisnow-garywickett or text code MNOW90 £5 to 70070.
You can also follow his progress on Facebook: www.facebook.com/garywickettfitness Twitter: @gmanwickett and Instagram: @GARYW_PT.
Meningitis Now is working towards a future where no one in the UK loses their life to meningitis and everyone affected gets the support they need.
It does this by funding research into vaccines and prevention, raising awareness so people know what to look for and what action to take if they suspect meningitis and rebuilding futures by providing dedicated support to people living with the impact of the disease.
For more information and to donate visit www.meningitisnow.org