Warwick Helps – Manchester Marathon Q&A

Warwick Helps is running the Manchester Marathon on the 10th October for This IS EPIC. We sat down with Warwick earlier this week and asked him some questions about his journey to the marathon.

How has your training gone to date?

Overall: very mixed.

I entered this race over 2 years ago with the original date for the race being April 2020. In March 2020, I was in excellent shape having completed all my hardest training sessions when COVID-19 came into our lives. The race has been deferred 3 times since then but is now scheduled for October 2021. After the 3rd deferral, I was completely losing focus so I took on a coach (Lee Merrien) for the first time and he has ensured that training has been varied & interesting.

I’ve been specifically training since June and all went perfectly until I had a fall (surprisingly not inebriated) in late July and required 3 weeks off (due to a likely cracked rib and knee too painful to run on). I’ve picked up pace since and the dream to run a sub 3 marathon is still on.

What has been the toughest aspect of marathon training?

Managing my hip! I am a candidate for a hip replacement as a genetic issue means that my hip is degenerating. I need to manage my hip pain and interrupted sleep on a daily basis and this has made the challenge so much more difficult that I could have ever anticipated. Also, for a runner who prefers races under 1 mile, this is the longest marathon training plan ever!!!

Why did you choose This Is EPIC over other charities?

Initially, seeing Warren and Philip take on nutty challenges drew my attention to this charity. But this led to me looking into what the charity was all about. Whilst I understand that hand outs are very much needed in the world, I love the fact that This Is EPIC educates poverty-stricken people/communities to make better informed decisions going forward via their loans & savings projects…it provides them with a firm base and then encourages them to utilise their returns more effectively.

What impact do you hope to have by raising money for This Is EPIC?

My hope is that every pound that I raise will help pull as many people out of poverty by offering them tools (in the form of skills and knowledge) to transform their lives indefinitely for the better.

What will be your inspiration to drag you through any dark moments in the marathon?

My family! I have spent many hours running, managing my hip and obsessing over completing this marathon…I will make sure for them that it was worth the sacrifice.


Our work focuses on empowering community driven change and providing a help up rather than a handout.