Major AADRF fundraiser Jamie Milne, has now begun his very ambitious 1800km run on the west coast of Australia to raise much needed funds and awareness for dementia research.
Jamie’s fundraiser titled ‘Many Miles for Mary’, is a nine-year-running tribute to his grandmother Mary who passed away in 1990 after a lengthy battle with Alzheimer’s disease.
At his grandmother’s funeral Jamie found himself unable to gather words to describe or farewell his grandmother after her passing. He made a promise to himself that one day, that in some shape or form, he would farewell her in his own special way – and so began Many Miles for Mary in 2009.
Jamie is an only child raised by his father, and his grandparents played a pivotal role in his early upbringing. Jamie describes his ‘nanny’ as a quiet homebody of a lady with relentless warmth, love and affection for him and his family.
“Many Miles for Mary is a tribute to my nanny who was the true essence of the word lady. For all the goodness in my personality and character my values, principles and love, I accredit to my grandparents, especially my nanny Mary,” Jamie said.
“The yearly event reminds me of this sweet and special person that was to me my own angel sent down to earth to show me that in a world full of complexity, there is much peace in simplicity. One of my fondest childhood memories was sharing her foot stool watching Coronation St under a tartan blanket enjoying jam, tea and toast.
“She left this world lonely, slowly and scared, and at the time I didn't know what to do. This disease of forgetfulness stole the one person in my life I never wanted to lose, she was a mother to me, a friend and a nurturer.”
In what will be his toughest challenge yet, Jamie will run a massive 1800km during Dementia Awareness Month, beginning 1 September in a bid to raise $20,000 for the Alzheimer’s Australia Dementia Research Foundation.
Starting in Perth, Jamie will head south down the coast, through the Margaret River Region, over to Albany and then head north via the centre, ending his journey in Geraldton.
To prepare for his yearly campaign, Jamie commits to a training regimen that is almost just as demanding as the ‘ultra-running events’ themselves. An example of one of his most grueling training sessions was a non-stop run across the Sunshine Coast where he ran an incredible 165km in just 26 hours.
“Suffering in training increases my durability and strength. It prepares me physically, emotionally and mentally. Readying myself for an 1800km run requires me to put myself through intense training that varies,” Jamie said.
“After running 80kms a day for 10 days straight my body is heavy and my legs get weary. It feels like I have a 40kg pack on my back, but it's all worth it to get the message out there that more needs to be done for this cause so close to my heart.”
Jamie owns his own gym in Queensland and has made it his mission to advocate for living a healthy lifestyle to look after brain health. Through the MMFM 2017 campaign, Jamie hopes to extend his fitness vision and its benefits to the greater public by getting them actively involved.
The business owner was the Queensland Memory Walk and Jog Ambassador this year, actively taking part in the greater Queensland communities to encourage people from all walks of life to get active.
Jamie hopes to inspire the Australian public by putting his body on the line, leading by example and showing that even what seems impossible, is in actual fact is possible, when you set your mind to it.