A Dad from West Didsbury ended up completing the Manchester Marathon in under five hours this past weekend after making a “stupid mistake”.
As mad as it may initially sound, Mat Wheelhouse hadn’t actually planned to run 26 miles when he arrived in Manchester city centre last Sunday clutching a bottle of water and hoping his AirPods wouldn’t run out of charge.
The 38-year-old was unprepared for the challenge he had ahead of him that day, and a big part of that was due to the fact he only had is name down to run half the distance.
Like many people across the globe, Mat had got himself hooked on running during the several COVID-19 lockdowns, and so he signed up for the Manchester Half Marathon with the idea of testing himself and raising worthy funds The Christie in memory of his late father.
But due to what he said was a “stupid mistake”, Mat realised that he’d missed the Half Marathon by hours, and had found himself in a queue full of runners preparing for the full marathon.
Mat said that although he was mortified by his error, he still wanted to keep his commitment to those that had sponsored him on his JustGiving page, so he went to the information centre to see if anything could be done and one of the volunteers then told him that the only option would be to upgrade to the full marathon – which she said she was happy to do for no extra fee.
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Prior to the race day, Mat had only been running 5k-10k, with the furthest distance he’d ever run being just 17km.
But, with his determination to complete some sort of marathon, Mat decided to take on the challenge – and surprisingly, he managed to complete the 26.2 miles in an incredible four hours and 47 minutes.
Mat explained that when he joined his mates on the tram, he noticed that they all had proper rucksacks full of drinks and snacks, while he just had a bottle of water, and it was only when he got into the queue that he realised that he was the only person with a Half Marathon sticker on his top.
“Then I started seeing streams of people coming in who had just finished the half marathon [and] I was so embarrassed because lots of people had sponsored me and I didn’t want to let them down, so I went to the information desk and told them what had happened.
“The woman said she could try and change my number and let me run in the marathon and then just dip out half way through – but I wanted to make sure I got the medal.
“I thought if I don’t finish I won’t get it, so I just decided to carry on running.”
While admitting that it was “very painful towards the end” and that the last five miles in particular were “incredibly hard”, Mat said that the Manchester public were amazing and that he’s never seen that amount of people out on the streets.
He comically added: “I think I might try and do a marathon again next year.
“But knowing me, I will probably end up signing up to the wrong thing and doing a triathlon or something.”
Peter Kay issues heartfelt thanks to Manchester fans and teases ANOTHER big announcement
Peter Kay has sent a lovely message to fans in Manchester after making his triumphant return to the live scene last weekend.
The Bolton comedian has just ticked off the first two nights of a mammoth run at the AO Arena, which includes 42 Manchester shows between now and 2025.
On his opening night – his first real venture into the spotlight since he largely stepped away from the public eye 12 years ago – he was moved to tears by the standing ovation he received before he’d even started the show.
And now Peter has issued a heartfelt thank you message.
He said in a statement: “I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone who came to the first shows in Manchester.
“It was incredible to be part of such a happy experience.
“Everybody deserves a bit of joy. Here’s to a lot more in the shows to come!!”
And that’s not all – his post also hinted that there’s yet another announcement to come (because apparently more than 100 tour dates and breaking the internet with ticket demand wasn’t enough).
The late monarch – who celebrated her Platinum Jubliee back in June 2022, before sadly passing away in September – the word guessing game that took the world by storm, and the disgraced Manchester United footballer are just three of the topics that have peaked the interest of Brits enough to search for them on Google this year.
Wordle took the top spot on the 2022 list, after gamers nationwide presumably used the search engine to figure out the answers each day.
The puzzle game beat out the 2022 World Cup – which is currently underway in Qatar with the Three Lions set to face France in the Quarter Finals – which came in second place, followed by Ukraine and Lateral Flow Tests (LFTs) rounding out the top five.
As well as Ukraine, the country of Russia has also made its way into the top 10 most-searched topics, thanks to the latter’s invasion of the former.
Likely the most familiar name on the list to Mancunians will be that of Manchester United footballer Mason Greenwood – who is due to face trial next year after being charged in 2022 with attempted rape, assault, and controlling and coercive behaviour relating to the same woman.
Wordle is not alone on the list when it comes to games either, as its more difficult counterpart Quordle – which tasks hardcore players with guessing four words in just nine tries – ranked in eighth place on the list.
Serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer, who was the subject of a new Netflix series starring Evan Peters in 2022, and actor Johnny Depp, who was at the forefront of a highly-publicised libel trial between him and his ex-wife Amber Heard for a considerable chunk of the year, are the last two searches to round out the top 10.