The TryAthletes section of the charity is run by Alan Kennedy, owner of the Surface+ Cafe on Great Western Road.
Alan first met Bryn when they were students in Glasgow and shared a flat. Sharing were Gareth the body builder, Robin the accountant, Steve the gigolo, Alan the artist and Bryn the engineer – an unlikely combination. Alan had the big room, whereas Bryn on the other hand had the cold, damp basement…perhaps that’s why he got Parkinson’s? (Alan’s sentiment). It should be noted that this flat share was where they mastered the art of darts.
When Bryn was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease at the age of 36 in 2007, Alan was already out running on a regular basis. He encouraged Bryn to join him when they learned that exercise can keep the symptoms of Parkinson’s at bay. Bryn took up running too, and together they completed the Men’s Health 10k in only 57 minutes!
The TryAthletes are anyone who want to Try to achieve something great, whether it is walking, running, swimming, cycling, climbing, space-hoppering…you name it, it is the trying that counts…to be part of something amazing with us, and hopefully to raise as much money as they are able, whenever they can. We welcome anyone on board who wants to give something a bash, and have Alan on hand to help with training and support.
Alan’s involvement with Funding Neuro and specifically the TryAthletes branch has continued, and he now organises the Run Club (JogScotland Glasgow West End) in association with Jog Scotland from his cafe every week. This is a weekly training run for all levels of ability, but caters for complete beginners, which many others do not.
This run club leads on to other training, not least the Unofficial 10k, now in it’s 4th year. This run is designed to allow people the chance to have one last proper run before the festivities begin! Check out the facebook event page for more information and route maps. We are now proud to include the Funding Neuro 10k at Strathclyde Park in our calendar of events. Alan has been pivotal in getting this race off the ground, and we now work with Glasgow Tri Club and Durty events, in conjunction with JogScotland Glasgow West End to make this even bigger and better.
Alan has taken part in all kinds of extreme running challenges over the years, and next up is the Wasdale Triathlon, which is the hardest half ironman in the world. Together with fellow TryAthlete Wendy Gorman, Alan is taking on this grueling race on 28th September. Set in the English Lake District valley of Wasdale, the beautiful surroundings cannot be allowed to lull participants into a false sense of security as this route contains the steepest 56 mile bike section, the deepest and coldest 1.2 mile swim and the highest 13.1 mile run – not to be confused with a pretty afternoon out!