Richard 900

This year marks Richards 5 year anniversary as a runner. It is the story of journey from 20 stone to a sub 5 minute mile runner taking in over £1.3m raised for charity. Richards first run in September 2012 was part of a weight loss programme. He lost 4 stone that year. He ultimately dropped to 10 stone but, now, with a nutritionist on board as part of his fitness team he is running at his ideal weight of 11 stone.

The first race was the Great Yorkshire Run in his home city of Sheffield. Something clicked that day out on the streets of Sheffield and Richards’ love affair with running began. Initially his running was aimed at charity fundraising. He grew a distinctive Mohican haircut to gain media attention for his charity work. The moniker ‘Mohican Runner’ stuck.

Each year he set a new charity goal. In 2013 the charity was Childline and the challenge was 13 by 10k runs in 13 weeks – with the goal to break his PB in each race. The 2014 objective was a half marathon every month for 13 months – this time the charity was NSPCC. 2015 saw the start his link raising money for Sheffield Children’s Hospital that still continues. The challenge was a race every week for 26 weeks. 2015 saw another first in his running career, the London Marathon (3:08:24).

I’ll benchmark the 2013 times: Mile 5:54 – 10k 41:38 – Half Marathon 1:41:42 – 5k Parkrun 20:19.

These are pretty quick times for a second year runner. However, in this period the bug for improving his times really struck. Richard set about learning the craft of running that took him to clubs like Sheffield Running Club, Steel City Striders, Hallamshire Harriers and Belgrave Harriers. Times started tumbling. His weakness though was his love for racing. He raced every week through 2014. This had an adverse effect on training and so peak performance suffered.

Moving on to 2016, Richard has dropped the Mohican Charity Runner tag to become Richard the Athlete: ‘The start of 2016, I took the hard decision to stop and re-evaluate my running.’ Instead of focusing on challenges, he decided to focus on lowering times and train almost full time. The goal now is to see how far he can take his running career. During the autumn of 2016 he set a new PB at mile, 3000m, 5k, 5 miles and 10 miles. ‘After my first bad patch during the summer, it was good to end 2016 with new PB’s as well as race victories at the Holmfirth 10k and Sneyd Striders Pudding Race.’

The charity work hasn’t stopped and he is still fundraising for Sheffield Children’s Hospital. Zeon will support Richard in his latest challenge to run a sub 3 hour marathon at the Yorkshire Marathon (York 8th October).  Richard is testing our new super light mesh vented running vest with the idea of using it at York.  He is also training in our mesh vented athletic training tee and lightweight 6″ shorts..

Richard Hayes is a Zeon Brand Ambassador, one of many who do initial testing for new products. His day job is as product designer for Logo.

Current PB’s: Mile 4:55 – 10k 35:14 – Half Marathon 77:26 – 5k Parkrun 17:16