Grantham Running Club’s reigning ultra-running champion Nick Payne passed a major milestone at the weekend when he completed his 50th race of marathon distance or longer at the Cambridge Boundary Run.
These races have taken place in seven countries, with the longest being 110 miles. In the last 12 months, he has run 26 of these marathon-plus events.
Nick currently holds the club record for the LDWA 100 miles event and the 69-mile Hadrian’s Wall Run. By completing his 50th long race, he is now eligible for associate membership of the hallowed 100 Marathon Club which he intends to join as a full member next year after running 10 marathons in 10 days to bring his total to exactly 100.
Nick started running marathons to fundraise for Pancreatic Cancer after his father was diagnosed with the disease. He soon became addicted to the sense of achievement after finishing a marathon.
Nowadays, he can not think of many better things to do than go out running for most of the day, exploring the countryside and new places.
He did not like cross country at school and does not consider himself a natural runner, however running marathons has taken him well out of his comfort zone, helping him grow as a person and increasing his confidence.
It has also improved his determination as even when his body wants to stop, his mind doesn’t let it. Nick said: “It’s shown me that I can achieve what I never thought possible.”
Nick was accompanied across the line by daughter Olivia as he finished in just under four and a half hours. Olivia had previously run with him at Belton House Parkrun as the middle part of his long training runs.
Nick was congratulated by GRC clubmates Gav Meadows, Catherine Payne, Robert McArdle and Rob Howbrook who all used the multi-terrain marathon as their longest training run in preparation for their various spring ‘big city’ marathons.
The photograph was taken by Nick’s wife Louise, an Ironman triathlete who is currently injured but expecting to return to racing herself within a few months. It shows, from left, back – Catherine Payne, Gav Meadows, Nick Payne, Robert McArdle, Rob Howbrook; front – Olivia Payne.