A Worcestershire woman celebrated her 70th birthday by running a marathon in aid of several charities.

Mary Weager says that she was “bitten by a running bug” after starting her fitness journey in 2017 when she finished treatment for breast cancer.

Mary joined Happy Feet Fitness in their Walking to Fitness group and went on to complete the Couch to 5K course with them that summer.

“I never thought I would say this, but I’ve been bitten by the running bug,” Mary said.

“I have completed several half marathons and in a moment of madness decided to celebrate my 70th birthday this year by running a marathon.

“I set about getting a team together to do this challenge with me. Marie and Rhiannon (co-founders of Happy Feet Fitness) were up for it.

“Kristy, Ann, and Lisa who I run with at HF were keen to be involved too, so my team was complete.

“We decided we would complete the 26.2 miles by running/walking laps around St John’s and the river and we'd use one of the runner's homes as a base for refuelling and toilet breaks.

“We all started together on a bright Sunday morning, and later that day we all finished, not quite together as one of the team had cramp about 10km from the end, but they still managed to speed walk the rest.”

The team celebrated as they crossed the finished line in what Mary says was an “incredible and very moving atmosphere”.

Medals were produced and sponsored by Worcester Physiotherapy Clinic.

Mary continued: “I’d decided to try and raise money for seven charities - one for each decade - and hoped to maybe raise a few hundred pounds but I’m delighted to say I raised a fantastic £2,180.

“Huge thanks must go to family, friends and running friends who sponsored us and made this possible.

“Special thanks to one of our runners Darran who works for Ceva Logistic and, he did a half marathon alongside us and raised £485 through work.

“I’d like to thank the team Marie, Kristy, Ann, Lisa and Coach Rhiannon for being so supportive.”

Some other people that sponsored Mary’s team:

Personalised race bibs by Prince-J Crafts

Beautiful flowers by Victoria’s Blooms

Cakes by Charlotte’s Cake Cart

Photos by John Weager and Purple Swan Photography

The seven charities Mary ran in aid of were:

St Richards Hospice

Worcestershire Breast Unit Haven

Worcester Warriors Foundation - Dementia Cafe

Young Minds / Behind the Smie

Chadsgrove Educational Trust

Worcester Association of Carers

The WEG -Worcester Environmental Group