Below is what Richard has to say about his epic run. He says he is grateful to us and what we do. We are so humbled by this man, because we are grateful to HIM and for his effort in raising over $5000 for our charity through his 2 runs. This one alone, Rich raised $3707.24 – which is so thoroughly deserved. Please read on below to hear Richard’s final entry in his amazing Heysen 105 experience.
On the 26th of October 2019 at 6am I stepped off to do something I never thought I could ever complete. I stepped off with the mindset that all I needed to do was 20kms at a time with the goal to complete 105kms of the infamous Heysen Trail. My first check point was 18km’s away, it was blowing a gale, which helped push me along and whilst it was hilly it seemed to be just a matter of crossing open paddocks… did not seem bad at all. My next checkpoint was another 18 km’s away, this was by far the most challenging 18kms of my run. It lead me through the Myponga national park which was made up of dense bush and up and down goat tracks. Whilst sprinting along the bottom of one of the hills a part of the fence caught, face first into the ground I hit the deck!! I was more than glad to see the tail end of Myponga. During the last 5kms of the second trail I was fighting my brain, arguing that I had what it takes to complete this run and I wasn’t a quitter!! Once I got to the checkpoint and saw my beautiful wife and awesome boys, I knew that I had to keep moving.
It was at this point, I could hear other people receiving calls from other runners to come collect them, 29 people dropped out that day!!! The next two check points where much the muchness, the hills got easier and my stubbornness had overtaken my ego and I had realised the only way I was going to successfully beat this track was if I actually walked and conserved my energy. The fourth check point saw me at the beginning of Kuitpo, a trail I have completed a couple of times so I was in familiar territory which was very helpful in what was to come next. The sun went down, I suddenly found myself in a pitch-black forest, with a head lamp and a GPS map on my phone. If it wasn’t for my phone and the ability to follow an arrow on the Heysen trail map I would still be out there. The last section was 21km’s, in the dark, in the bush…. I simply stuck to the idea, every step was a step closer!! At 2340 I crossed that line and completed 105kms on foot!! First thing out of my mouth to Stevi “Can we go home now?”
I want to thank everyone that made a donation to Play for a Cure, you are the true heroes in this battle, the money that goes to these scientists that are making leaps and bounds towards a cure comes from your selfless pockets!! Thank you to my CoC and the boys I work with, I never would have ever been able to achieve this without the time and sacrifice I was given to train. A huge thank you to my partner in crime, Stevi has sat with me for days on end working out running plans, eating plans, arguing with my stubborn butt about what will work and that my way isn’t the right way. She also was at every check point to support me, feed me and encourage me when she could see I was ready to give up and definitely not in the mood to talk into a camera!! Thank you to the ADF Softball people, I would have never found P4AC without you guys and girls, and thank you for all of the fines which were donated to my run. Last but definitely not least thank you to Leigh and the Play for a Cure crew, for the great support and the selfless acts that each and every one of you make every day to fight the fight, When a Cure is found I guarantee it will be you that have had a hand in it!! My condolences and love to the Warde family, Grant’s Mom and Dad messaged me whilst I was at the highest peak on the run and I bawled my eyes out!! Followed by multiple messages from Grant’s brother pushing me along, love ya mate. Sharne, Danielle and Cameron (Grants wife and children) I am always here to support and help you. Thank you to my brother Grant, you sat on my shoulder during the whole run, I love you brother, I will always be your keeper!!