Rod MacDonald

Broken arm didn’t stop ‘Local Hero’ Rod MacDonald raising £1200 for Peterborough Soup Kitchen in London Marathon

Rod McDonald, a local long distance runner, ran this year’s London Marathon despite being injured during training – to help make life better for the city’s homeless after a chance meeting with volunteers from the local soup kitchen. Rod McDonald, a local long distance runner, ran this year’s London Marathon despite being injured during training – to help make life better for the city’s homeless after a chance meeting with volunteers from the local soup kitchen.

Rod Presenting the Cheque
Rod presents his cheque for £1211.00 to PSK Chairman Ian Davies

Rod McDonald, 52 from Peterborough – who works locally for HMRC – set himself an ambitious target to raise £1,000 in 4 months for Peterborough Soup Kitchen. All the money raised would go towards replacing the charity’s hard-working van, used to serve food six days a week in the city centre.

But during the first week of March he slipped on an icy pavement and suffered an accident whilst training on his bike, badly fracturing a radial bone in his left arm. Seven weeks before the start of the London Marathon he was laid up, unable to, drive, cycle or run with his arm in a sling.

Rod said: “I was devastated by the injury, but not for myself – I was committed to raising the money for the Soup Kitchen. I felt very conscious of letting lots of people down. Nothing was going to stop me though. I was even prepared to walk around the 26 mile London Marathon course if I had to!”Rod said: “I was devastated by the injury, but not for myself – I was committed to raising the money for the Soup Kitchen. I felt very conscious of letting lots of people down. Nothing was going to stop me though. I was even prepared to walk around the 26 mile London Marathon course if I had to!”

In the end Rod ‘s arm healed enough for him to re-start his training, but he was still wracked with pain. Nevertheless he did the race knowing that he’d lost weeks of valuable preparation time which could not be made up, and during the race itself his lack of training started to tell at about 14 miles, at the Isle of Dogs.

He said: “My mantra became ‘get round the Dogs!’ which I repeated to myself for over 8 miles. By the time I got to the Thames Embankment (22 miles) I tried taking on board some energy gels, which I just grabbed, but found that I was too weak to open with my fingers or teeth. I stopped and a policeman opened them for me.

“I then struggled on to mile 23 when my legs went into spasm and I knew I couldn’t run much further, but I did manage to stagger to the end, in a total blur of agony. Elatedly, I slowly crossed the line in 4 hours and 11 minutes.”

Rod came across the Peterborough Soup Kitchen van and volunteers in Long Causeway on the 20th January, this year, when they were fundraising. He was so impressed when talking to them about the work they do for the homeless of Peterborough that he pledged to run the Marathon to raise money for the charity.

Rod added: “Their genuine enthusiasm for what they do for homeless people was infectious. I decided there and then to help them raise money by getting sponsorship for the soup kitchen and running the London Marathon. “

Rod managed to raise an outstanding £1,200

He had also spent a freezing cold evening in February with volunteers at the soup kitchen serving food to the city’s homeless, adding: “I found the experience moving and humbling and now appreciate the work of the charity much more.”

Ian Davies, the new Chairman of PSK added: “We can’t thank Rod enough. It’s not every day that someone runs a marathon for you and does so whilst having trained so hard and in such pain! He is an inspiration to us all and is playing an important part towards a much needed replacement van.”

If you’ve been inspired by Rod to do something to raise funds for PSK please contact Carlos Dominguez on 01733 380037 or fundraising@peterboroughsoupkitchen.org.uk