“I was willing it to end but the fundraising element motivated me to get to the finish line, along with thoughts of Harry” – Rob completed his first ultramarathon for EACH as his nephew receives care at The Nook

A steely fundraiser battled through the “pain cave” to complete his first ultramarathon and support the charity that cares for his young nephew.

Rob Fulford tackled the Endurancelife South Devon event – a sapping challenge following a rugged coastal trail – and raised more than £8,700 for East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH).

It is a charity close to his heart as nephew Harry and parents James and Sophie – Rob’s brother and sister-in-law – receive care and support at The Nook.

The six-year-old was diagnosed with a rare neurological disorder, Alexander Disease, in November 2019.

Rob completed the 55km run – compounded by 2,000 metres of ascent – in six hours and 40 minutes.

“The first couple of hours were enjoyable,” said the 42-year-old, who completed his first marathon last year, along the Sussex coastline.

“However, the second half was much more challenging and, in terms of the last few miles, it was the hardest physical thing I’ve done.

“There were some dark moments and I was willing it to end, especially when the clock ticked past five hours. I was in the pain cave!

“That’s when I thought of the fundraising element, which helped, inspired and motivated me to get to the finish line – along with thoughts of Harry, obviously.

“I knew my challenge would come to an end and the pain was only for a limited amount of time, whereas that’s not the case for some of the children and families receiving care and support from EACH.

“For them, it’s ever-present, rather than temporary, and, when I thought of it like that, it made my challenge more straightforward.”

Rob initially set a target of raising £500, but increased it to £1,000 and then £5,000.

His current tally stands at £8,732 and his efforts were boosted by support from TV presenters Jake Humphrey and Simon Thomas, both of whom know Sophie.

“I’m delighted and have been blown away by people’s generosity and spirit of kindness,” said Rob.

“Jake and Simon were great and didn’t need to do what they did. There were a few anonymous donations soon after they posted on social media.”

Dad-of-two Rob, who works in finance, is hoping to visit The Nook and knows the difference it makes through speaking to James and Sophie.

“From what I hear and know, it’s a wonderful place that offers invaluable support – both in the present and in terms of helping bolster their confidence for what’s to come in the future,” he said.

“Harry’s such a gorgeous, determined little boy and a very cheerful presence.

“I’d describe him as a cheeky, fun-loving little angel with a glint in his eye.

“Whenever we see him, he’ll grab my hand and show me what he’s been up to.”

There is still time to sponsor Rob. To show your support, head here.

The Endurancelife South Devon event took place on 27th January.

Find our notes to editors here.

Keep in touch:

For further information about this release please contact:

Matt Plummer | Media and PR Manager | 07738 328058 | Matt.Plummer@each.org.uk

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