A bride and groom-to-be are to run the Great North 10k Gateshead as part of a special challenge they have set each other to complete a running event each month before their wedding.
Childhood sweethearts Caitlin Scott, 23, and her fiancé Matthew Worton, 24, from Marske-by-the-Sea, North Yorkshire, have signed up to run in eight events together before they tie the knot in October.
Having been together for ten years, they have been supporting each other in all of their training for the Great North 10k Gateshead on July 3 which is giving them something to focus on as their big day approaches.
Caitlin, who works as a paralegal, said: “We love running together, it has definitely made me realise how much Matthew’s support makes a difference.
“There has been a few times where I have just wanted to stop and go home rather than finish our run but he has kept me going.
“I’ve made excuses not to go on a run then Matthew has picked me up and encouraged me to put my trainers on and get out there!
“The training for the Great North 10k Gateshead gives both of us something else to focus on apart from the wedding.
“We made a pact that we wouldn’t let the stress get on top of us so this is a good distraction and we are getting fitter and healthier which is a bonus.”
The couple believe they always run better as a partnership and decided to set each other the challenge as it meant they could also take out their pet whippet, Molly.
After suffering a knee injury, Caitlin didn’t feel confident enough to take on a half marathon event and so Matthew decided to join her in signing up to a shorter distance.
They will marry on Saturday October 15 at Matfen Hall, Northumberland, which will be the same week as their tenth wedding anniversary.
They are also working out a creative way to celebrate completing their 10k challenge on their big day.
Caitlin added: “I think we all take for granted the support given by a running partner, especially our other half.
“For us, we have been quite focused on planning the wedding but the support on each run that Matthew has given me has made me more determined to complete our challenge.
“I lost my mum in 2012 to cancer and Matthew was a huge support for me.
“I think because of all the hurdles we've gone through together means it's natural for us to keep encouraging each other in what ever task were doing.
“There's still some competition between us though – the last 30 second sprint to the finish line or back to our house to see who get there first, although it's usually the dog that wins!
Caitlin and Matthew are raising money for Teesside Hospice during their running challenge. More information about the charity can be found here: teessidehospice.org
The North East’s biggest 10k running event is returning to Gateshead on Sunday 3 July and participants will cross the finish line inside the iconic Gateshead International Stadium.