Transcendit Director Tom Tinsley is once again putting on his running shoes for the Children's Heart Unit Fund (CHUF) and taking on the Great North Run. We caught up with Tom to chat about his last experience of the race, and find out more about CHUF.
'I last ran for CHUF with Team Transcendit in 2019, which was made up of some of the Directors, support engineers and web developers.' In 2019, Tom crossed the finish line in 1 hour and 31 minutes, and came second overall in his age category.
'Due to the pandemic there was no Great North Run in 2020. I did run last year, but without fundraising, so I'm keen to run again for CHUF this year.'
Tom says he was disappointed with his run last year, ' I was probably fitter than ever when the country started opening up from lockdown as running, walking or cycling were the only outdoor activities available. Then, on holiday in Scotland, I was just trying to tick over by going for the odd jog and I pulled my hamstring.'
Despite the injury, Tom still decided to do the Great North Run two weeks later, 'I managed to convince myself that I had recovered enough, and all was well until 11K into the run when I had a sudden, sharp pain in my leg. I completed the run, but was limping by the end. So it was not an enjoyable experience and I needed a few weeks of complete rest before I could do any exercise at all.'
Tom is feeling confident about this year, and says, 'I am fit enough to get around as long as I don't injure myself between now and then - though I think old age is starting to catch up with me!'
Transcendit has supported CHUF since the business was founded in 2000. 'We've always had a personal connection with CHUF,' says Tom. 'The original charity was set up by Director Dave Scott’s mum, Anne Scott. It's been incredible to watch it grow over the years, and see the impact that it has had for children and young people in the North East.'
CHUF offers support and services for children and young people in the North East and beyond who are born with or develop heart conditions. The Children's Heart Unit at the Freeman Hospital in Newcastle is one of only two units in the UK that can offer pediatric transplants and bridge to transplant operations. The unit regularly treats critically ill babies and children from across the UK.
'CHUF provides the NHS with much-needed funding for equipment and research,' says Tom. 'And it also offers holistic care for young people and their families, help and support to those who are going through one of the most difficult periods of their lives. I'm proud to be running for them, and be raising some money to support the life-changing work that they do.'
If you'd like to support Tom and CHUF, you can donate at Tom's Just Giving page here