‘I’m humbled by all your support’

In case you hadn’t noticed, it’s Marathon time! We’re very lucky to have a fantastic team of 20 runners taking on this ultra-challenge and raising money for us. One of our runners is NHNN neurosurgeon, Neil Kitchen, who is a long-time supporter of the charity. This is his seventh year running for The National Brain Appeal and before race day, we grabbed him for five minutes to do a quick-fire Q&A session…

Q How are you feeling about the race on Sunday?

A Excited, of course!

Q How has your training been going?

A Well, let’s say I have ‘no injuries’, and I’ve put in a reasonable number of miles, but I know it’s not really enough…

Q Are you a keen runner, even when you aren’t training for a race?

A Yes – I’ve run and cycled all my adult life. Twice a week I try to run into work, and then at weekends the weekends I’ll generally build in a longer run. I run to keep fit and feel good. Neurosurgery is a serious profession – running is a great antidote to that – if my running can help neurosurgery patients, then it’s ideal.

Q What was your best time when you previously ran the marathon?

A My best time was 3hrs 28mins. I will be slower than that this year! But I’m hoping for under four hours.

Q Do you have any advice for our other #TeamBrainAppeal runners for getting through the 26 miles?

A Don’t go too fast to begin with. Enjoy the run and ‘slow it down’ in your mind – if you rush, you will blow up!

Q How do you keep yourself going when you hit ‘the wall’

A Don’t keep going, walk for a bit and have something to eat. That should get you through.

Q What are your plans for after the race?

A I’m going to go home and watch Arsenal play Chelsea!

Q This year, you’re running to acknowledge the bravery of your brain tumour patients. The support on JustGiving already has been incredible. You’ve almost reached £20,000 in donations! How does that make you feel?

A I’ve read lots of the comments next to donations on my JustGiving page and I’m humbled and inspired by them. People’s generosity has been overwhelming. The money I raise will go towards the Operating Theatres Appeal. The new and upgraded theatres will enable us to treat more neurosurgical patients, which can only be a good thing. Without The National Brain Appeal, many projects that have occurred during my 20 years as a consultant simply would not have happened.

Thanks Neil – and good luck!

Want to sponsor Neil running the marathon? You can do it here. You can add donations up to three months after the run.





Where Next

The National Hospital and The Institute of Neurology
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