On 3rd February 2005 my life changed.
I was driving to Uni when I was involved in a head on collision with another vehicle. I have no memory of the event side from a brief recollection of lying in the road (apparently after being cut out of the car).
I was airlifted to Salisbury Hospital where I was “worked on” and then remained in a medically induced coma for 6 weeks.
I had broken my left humerus, right tibia and fibula, both femurs and fractured part of my pelvis.
Due to the multiple breaks, bone marrow entered my blood stream and caused a fat embolism on my brain which caused a global brain injury.
My family were told to prepare for the worse but thankfully I pulled through but my next memory was in March – being transported to Poole Hospital Portland Ward for specialist brain injury rehibilitation.
It was here that I continued my gruelling recovery which included speach and language therapy, physiotherapy, hydrotherapy, occupational therapy and sessions with a psychologist.
I was told that I wouldn’t be able to return to work at the level I had been and that it was unlikely I would be able to study in an academic capcity again.
I was discharged from hospital in July 2005 which was earlier than originally epected given my injuries, but I was still attending outpatient rehabilitation sessions and it was at that time that I started attending Headway.
Headway helped me by offering support and understanding which enabled me to come to terms with my brain injury; regain cognitive skills, re-integrate socially, emotionally and gain confidence.
After a while I was able to undertake voluntary work in one of their charity shops before finally being able to return to the workplace on a part time basis, whilst continuing to attend my Headway group to help me on my journey of recovery.
It was after my injury that I started distance running seriously. I had done the occasional recreational short run near my home before but nothing serious. One day, my brother suggested I run a marathon with him. I couldn’t think of a reason why not so in May 2011 – a week after my 30th birthday – I ran my first marathon in Edinburgh.
It was not a great experience and took me over 5 hours!
I did 1 or 2 marathons a year after that, then, in 2015, I met my partner who introduced me to trail running.
Trail running is a whole different ball game to road running. It’s very different on both a physical and mental level. I upped my game and in 2015 I completed 6 marathons!
In 2016 I completed 14 then in 2017 I did 24!
I have currently run a tota of 58 marathons and still going.
Finally, after about 6 ballot rejections, I have managed to get a place in the 2020 London Marathon. I am fundraising for Headway who have done so much for me and whose work continues to support so many people.
To support Luke and Headway Somerset if you can