Harrogate runner overcame grief by taking part in Great North Run and she's doing it again for Heart Research UK
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Sarah Staiano, a brand business and development manager at local business Up and Running, took part in what is the largest half marathon in the world in 2014 following the death of her mother but vowed to never do it again after finding the event difficult.
"I haven’t done the GNR since 2014 when I very first started running,” said Sarah.
"I hated it and vowed “never again” but a bit of inspiration from Heart Research UK and a very good friend of mine reaching a milestone birthday and asking me to run with her has changed my mind.
"Plus it is now ten years since I lost my mum, which was the reason I started to run in the first place.
"It was awful at the time but I did start to run to help with grief and it was a strange thing as it did help to deal with pain.
"Running caused a physical pain which, in the moment, distracted from the grieving pain.”
Sarah chose HRUK to run for partly because her family has also experienced heart issues, and partly because the Leeds-based charity is Up & Running’s partner for 2023.
“My family has had its fair share of heart issues; it is something we are always aware of,” she said.
"My dad has atrial fibrillation where his heart beats at an irregular rhythm.
"It is now kept in check with various treatments.
"Many heart issues go undiagnosed and heart disease is one of the single biggest killers in the UK.
"It is vital to help reduce this and continue to fund research to save lives.”
Rachel Brooke, National Campaigns & Events Manager at Heart Research UK, said: “We’re so grateful for Sarah’s support and her dedication in taking on this massive challenge despite vowing to never do it again."
Sarah has set up a JustGiving page for donations called Sarah's fundraising page for Heart Research UK
More information: https://heartresearch.org.uk/