Paul Giblin: Athlete Focus - Pyllon Endeavour

What is the Challenge?

To run 192 miles as part of a team on the West Highland Way from Milngavie to Fort William and back in 24 hours.

Why?

To raise awareness of the mental health challenges which we are all likely to face at some point in our lives either personally or with those around us. As ultra runners, we are used to dealing with problems on our own. But we know that having support around us is key in those tough times, and there’s never any shame in asking for help.

We hope that this event will encourage people to be open and honest about how they feel and that we’ll all create a safe environment day to day, for others to share their challenges and experiences.

Please help us raise awareness - it’s ok, not to be ok.

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Who is Paul Giblin?

Coach. Runner. Friend to some amazing people. I’ve run some big races around the world including WS100 and UTMB. 3 x times winner of the West Highland Way race.

Why this challenge?

I’ve been incredibly focused on races for many years. Travelling from home for long periods to train and to race. To an ultra runner it looks like the perfect life. It’s what I’ve chosen and I work hard for it. But it’s not easy. It can be a very lonely existence and often one filled with pressure and uncertainty.

Earlier this year I was in a difficult place emotionally. I wasn’t sure what way to turn. I wasn’t sure why I was living this life. And then something changed. I realised the value of community at an event that I was putting on. Before it started, I was reluctant about doing it, but as it got closer I saw and felt people opening up. Talking, sharing and being there for each other. I knew then that the magic wasn’t in training plans, clever tempo sessions and peaking strategies, but in helping people to see the good that’s already there. Inside. And to help them bring that to the front.

I see mental health issues every week. Athletes, friends and family. And we brush it under the carpet way too often. I promise to try and help people to talk. I promise to listen. I promise to do what I can to create more safe spaces. This #PyllonEndeavour project is the first step in me holding myself to those promises.

I thank everyone involved in this. It’s been an incredible team effort, and we haven’t even started running yet!

How to help Paul?

Get involved, by tracking us online, supporting us on the day, and / or by making a donation to SAMH. We’ve already reached our initial fund raising target, but we never expected so much support this early, so please help us reach over 200%!

Find out more about Pyllon Endeavour

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Follow Pyllon on Twitter and Instagram for updates.