With only a couple of weeks to go until the London Marathon on 21 April, we're delighted to let you know that we've got a runner taking part in the prestigious event to raise funds for Aspens this year.

Rylan Holey, whose cousin Sarah is supported by Aspens (pictured with Rylan, along with Sarah's sister Anna, below), is putting on his running shoes in support of our charity. He tells us why running for Aspens is so important to him, how his training is going as he prepares for the big day and about his own journey with health and fitness. 

"We’re a very close family and I grew up seeing a lot of Sarah, who has been supported by Aspens in Pembury since 2009.

When visiting Sarah her support worker mentioned that Aspens sometimes offers places running in the London Marathon. I’d been wanting to do a marathon and I thought this was the perfect opportunity to do this for a great cause. Sarah’s late father, my uncle Nick, was a trustee of Aspens and had always wanted to run the London Marathon but couldn’t get a place, so I’m doing it for him too.

The work the team do at Aspens is so amazing. They need all the support they can get, especially now with challenges around funding from local authorities. I’ve had opportunities to run for other charities, but I wanted to do this for Aspens as it means so much to me, because of the support that Sarah receives from the charity.

I took up running during COVID. I started gradually running longer distances and ran a half-marathon. I lost 36 kilos through my running, and was mentioned as one of the 101 Trailblazers in Attitude Magazine, which was a really proud moment for me.

With a month to go now until the big day, all I’m thinking about is running! I’m aiming to run it in sub-4, then I don’t have to do it again as this will be a huge achievement for me. My training is pretty intense now – I run around 13kms on a Tuesday, do interval sprints on a Wednesday, Thursdays I focus on strength training and Saturdays I go for a long, slow run.

As the big day approaches I’m quite nervous as it’s my first time running a marathon. But I’m excited too and have decided I’m not going to wear headphones – I want to experience all the emotions of it all and really feel part of it.

I still can’t believe I’m actually going to do it – if you’d asked me 4 years ago I never would’ve believed it!

Sarah and my family, including Sarah’s sister Anna, are coming to support me on the day, and it would be great to see anyone else from Aspens there – so please do come and cheer me on.

If you’re able to donate to my page I’d be so grateful and it would mean a lot to me, thank you."

Support Rylan at the link below.

Support Rylan and Donate here

A big thank you to Rylan's employers Adobe who have kindly offered to match fund all donations from Adobe employees. 

Read more about Rylan’s fitness journey here