By South Wales Police Inspector Carwyn Evans
Debs and I are a husband and wife from Aberdare who have not far off seventy years of serving in the police between us.
Our marathon journey
To become a police officer, which we both did around 1990, we had to run a mile and a half in under twelve minutes for men and thirteen and a half for women. We both comfortably did this then because we were young! We both then didn’t run for many years before Debs took it up again about seven years ago. She has since completed eight marathons including London with a charity place in 2015, doing it then in just over four hours.
I took up running again when I was only meant to be a driver for the 2015 South Wales Police team taking part in the annual Baker to Vegas Challenge Cup relay in the USA. Debs was always going to be running in it but I volunteered when we saw there weren’t enough runners going to form a team. I ended up running my four and a half mile leg through the Mohave desert at night on an undiagnosed broken fibula bone in my leg.
Having gone up to support friends doing the London Marathon in 2016 I decided that I wanted to have a go, too! I wanted to fundraise for charity as part of the effort. When I saw Crimestoppers on the list of charities I knew it was the one for me. I had a good understanding of what Crimestoppers does from years in the police, and used to include the charity’s anonymous phone number when writing appeals for witnesses to serious collisions.
Perseverance despite a few setbacks
I planned to do the event in 2017 but became injured and asked to defer the place for 2018. London was going to be my first ever marathon but, without any preparation or intent, I ran a marathon as part of a full distance triathlon training weekend in July 2017. In August 2017 I completed my first middle distance triathlon and then began to really concentrate on my marathon training. I set new personal records in all the events I did in the autumn. I was improving all the time, helped by a considerable loss of weight and increase in fitness through different classes I attended.
I had a disaster on Boxing Day at a race event when, in the process of breaking four personal records, I also broke a metatarsal bone in my foot resulting in six weeks in a boot. I maintained my fitness and my reduced weight, and am now back on the road to London with great help from my physiotherapist and soft tissue therapist. Debs, in the meantime, has maintained her strict training programme all the way through.
Great fundraising support
Our fundraising has gone well. I set up my Virgin Money Giving page very early on and had my paper sponsor forms with me in work and wherever I went anywhere. We had great generosity from organisations that I am involved in such as the Police Mutual. We’ve also had support from Crimestoppers Wales through Regional Manager Ella. We have fundraising events ongoing between now and the Marathon, including a virtual running challenge with well over a hundred participants, spin class and entertainment evening. Myself and Debs have a small number of running events coming up as well. We will run these in our Crimestoppers tops and record the day on social media with the hope that family and friends continue to make donations.
22nd April 2018 – London Marathon day!
We’re looking forward to going up to London and are taking our daughter and her boyfriend along as well. We’ll go to the ExCeL on the Friday and then enjoy the sights of London on the Saturday. I’m looking forward very much to the day and the massive support as we go round the course. I’ll be looking out for the Crimestoppers cheer point at mile 18. Our family and friends will be there alongside the Thames a mile from the end. Looking forward to the Crimestoppers event afterwards and meeting the other runners, and the Events Team from Crimestoppers.
If you are looking for a London Marathon place and want to support us then apply for a charity place with Crimestoppers today.