It seems like a lot of people in the UK start running as part of a charity fundraiser. This is not my story! However, I've run a few races where any profits have gone to support a school or other local charity. In this case there's no commitment needed to raise funds - just pay your entry and maybe buy a cake off the parents association stall on the day.

However, when looking for something a little more challenging to help with my half-marathon training plan, I stumbled across the Muddy Mo Run. Available in 10k and 10M sizes, this run through Swinley Forest sounded like a fun challenge with a serious cause at its heart.

November is the month where you may become aware of a larger than normal band of men furnishing their upper lip with hair, as the month is renamed Movember. Unfortunately, as the rules state you must start the month clean-shaven, even the fastest grower wasn't going to have more than a shadow at the race start of 10am on 1 November! So many drew on moustaches with their wife's (I assume) make-up or found ones that could be stuck on, before heading out into the forest.

The organisers promised just three wet and muddy sections in the course. However, they neglected to mention that the 10 milers would need to pass through two of those a second time! But for the sake of changing the face of men's health, 79 of the 276 runners ploughed their way through the bog once more. My friend, a seasoned Mo Bro, entered the 10k and was there to meet met when I returned after 1 hour 24 minutes and a handful of seconds to the finish line. He actually looks muddier than me, as he apparently fell over in the bog. The pained expression on my face may be due to the tightness of the morunner headbands we were given - either they were children's size or my wife is right that I have a big head!

About Matt

Not known for sport at school, I took up running in my mid-forties. Very soon I caught the running bug and progressed from the Couch to 5K programme, via parkrun, various 10k races and the Great North Run to running marathons and beyond in the UK and overseas. Now in my fifties, I still run fast enough to impress my friends and family, but not fast enough to think I've missed a vocation as an Olympian!

Race History

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