A COUPLE from Kingscourt are clocking up the miles as they prepare for the London Marathon.

Colin and Karen Waller have taken up the challenge of the 26.2 mile race on Sunday April 13, and are hoping to use the event to raise money for charity.

Karen says: “We’re both members of Stroud Athletic Club and have done several half marathons, and we’re following a plan putting in three runs a week. We both work as nurses – Colin is a theatre nurse in Cirencester and I’m a community nurse in Stroud - so had to find a way of training that would fit around our lifestyle, and we’ve been building up to this for several months.”

She adds: “We do one long run a week, of around 22 miles now, plus a shorter run at higher speed, and then speed work, usually on a treadmill at the gym.”

Karen is using her first marathon as a way to raise money for the Cinnamon Trust. She says “I’m very keen on animals but, as a nurse, felt I had to think of people too, so this is the ideal charity as it looks after pets for the terminally-ill, helping patients keep their pets at home for as long as possible.”

Colin, who completed the London Marathon 25 years ago, is running for the Beresford Group, which operates Stroud Women’s Refuge. Both are aiming to raise at least £200 for each of their charities.

Karen says: “We aim to do one run together each week, and we’re lucky in having friends and family who’ll look after the children while we go out, as a long run can take over three hours.”

The couple are planning to run the London course and cross the line together, hopefully in under four hours. And Karen adds: “We we know our children, Findlay who’s 10 and Ruby who’s eight, will be cheering us on on the television on the day.”

• If you’d like to support this marathon pair you can donate to Karen’s charity via www.everyclick.com/curlyk/info and to Colin’s via https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/wollah