RAF Brize Norton Airman's 2018km charity run and row

An Airman from RAF Brize Norton recently completed a 2018 kilometre physical challenge whilst deployed in Cyprus. Sergeant Jim Gregory, a C130J (Hercules) Loadmaster on 47 Squadron came up with the idea of running 2018 km throughout 2018 whilst out jogging on New Year’s Day last year.

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The last 4.7km being run at 903 EAW on New Year's Eve

Describing himself as ‘a non-runner’ prior to the challenge, he was able to consistently run over a three-month period until an Achilles tendon injury forced Jim to switch his efforts of hitting his daily distance target to a rowing machine instead.

After months of spending up to 90 minutes a day rowing, his injury finally healed and he was able to resume running. By December he still had 270 km to go which increased his daily average from an initial 5.5 km to 9 km for the last 31 days. On New Year’s Eve only 4.7 km remained and some of his squadron friends joined him on a sunny day in Akrotiri to finally complete the challenge before celebrating his achievement with a glass of Prosecco and a few photographs. As part of a busy squadron that deploys often, Jim’s challenge has seen him run and row in places such as Canada, Cyprus, Iraq, Italy, Crete and the USA among others.

Speaking of choosing to raise funds for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust.

 “It’s a charity close to my heart. My daughter, aged 7, has cystic fibrosis which is a genetic lung and digestion condition that can be life-limiting and affects her on a daily basis.”

Sergeant Jim Gregory

Having initially set a goal of raising (you guessed it!) £2018, Jim was delighted to more than double this to a final total of an impressive £5750. 

“The messages of support I’ve received from colleagues ranging from SAC to Group Captain have been the most inspiring and motivational tool I’ve had. My Sqn Ldr sent me a great message in my last week which read ‘you’re inspiring’ and that gave me the boost I needed to get over the finish line.”  

Sergeant Jim Gregory

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