ENDURING  HEAVY rain, driving cold winds and numerous injuries, four “brave hearts” completed a four day ultra marathon challenge and raised over £7,000 for a cancer charity.

Dianne Spencer, Sharon Davies, Fflur Roberts and Kim Evans finished their 135 mile odyssey to conquer the Glyndwr Way, in the early hours of last Friday morning (September 15)

Family, friends and fellow members of the Dolly Mixture running clubs, were on hand to see the emotional end to the challenge.

After 61 hours of running, all four huddled around the monument that notes the end of the trail in Welshpool, and hugged each other.

Sharon Davies, is still recovering from the gruelling feat of endurance when she spoke to The County Times:

“We were all struggling at the end.

“All in a bad way.”

The first day was fine, the runners did over 30 miles from Knighton to Abbeycwmhir and arrived at the B&B on time at 7,30pm.

But faced with driving rain and freezing winds, the going got tougher and tougher, for the quartet.

On day three they arrived at Cann Office Hotel in Llangadfan late at night, a group member down with Fflur Roberts forced to pull out of the challenge on doctors orders, with a badly sprained ankle. 

The start of day four at 6am, saw the runners having to go back and complete the last six miles of day three’s schedule, before staring the run to Welshpool going through Dolanog and Meifod.

Sharon continued: “It’s taken a huge toll on our bodies, we could not have done it without our families and supporters.

“We carried our own food and water but we had our support meet us every 10 miles..

“During the last day we really needed their help.

“It made such a difference that they just took over, gave us food and drink and told us what to do.

“It was tougher than we ever imagined.

“We’d planned this and trained for so long.

“I wanted to feel elation at the end. But I only felt numb.”

“Hopefully when we’ve recovered we can enjoy a sense of achievement in what we did.”

Sharon explained: “We decided to raise funds for Bowel and Cancer Research, because Graham, Diane’s husband is suffering from bowel cancer.

“We thought that we needed to do something out of the ordinary to fundraise.

“We’ve run ultra-marathons, which is 35 or 42 miles so we came up with this idea.”

Dolly Mixture running club member, Claire Allen, was part of the backup team, providing support and refreshments along the way.

“Claire, said: “It was truly emotional.

“It was fantastic and inspiring that they stuck it out and stuck together.

“There was no way they were going to give up.

“And Fflur joined them for the last three quarters of a mile in Welshpool, walking with them on her crutches.”

Claire added: “For the last day, they were like zombies, they couldn’t speak.

“We had some experienced runners in the support team, and basically took over when they stopped.

“Giving them food and drinks, and tending to their feet – it’s what had to be done, make the decisions for them.

“It’s such an achievement, I cannot tell you how much I admire them.

“It was good for the dollies as well because it shows what someone can do after starting to run.

“I have a deep admiration for what they’ve achieve, they have such brave hearts, it’s inspirational.”

The runners would like to thank all the companies who helped them including Morrisons, Coco Coffee Shop, John Lowe Electrical, Pentrenant Poultry, Fiona Wright, Fit and Well Massage, Serendipity Flowers, Constructiv Clothing and Cwpan Pink Café. They all contributed with supplies, kit and costs towards accommodation.

And also a special thanks to Knights Construction who donated  £1,000.

With money still coming in to the appeal, the challenge will raise more than £7,000 for Bowel and Cancer Research and there is still a chance To support, you can donate at https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Sharon-Davies26.