A NURSE will overcome the pain and fatigue of a debilitating disease to run the Edinburgh Marathon with his 73-year-old mother in aid of injured war heroes.
Most runners experience pain and fatigue when competing in a marathon, but Rob Anderson, 52, of Kettering, will be fighting auto-immune disease as he pounds the streets of the Scottish capital in aid of Help for Heroes on Sunday, May 27.
Senior staff nurse Mr Anderson, who has to inject himself once a fortnight, said: “It can be tough but I go through periods of relapse and remission and at the minute I am in a good period so just hoping it will last until the marathon is over.”
Mr Anderson’s mother, who took up running aged 60, and his brother-in-law John, both of whom live in his native Glasgow, will be running with him.
Doctors diagnosed Mr Anderson with auto-immune disease two years ago. It means his immune system mistakes substances and tissues naturally present in his body as an infection and attacks them.
He said: “I suffer from bouts of fatigue and joint pain and have to inject myself with drugs every fortnight. The disease is incurable, progressive and eventually debilitating.”
Mr Anderson took up running when he finished playing football two years ago and ran the last two Glasgow half-marathons with his mum. John ran the last one with them and they decided they should do a marathon together.
He said: “I have raised money in the past for Macmillan nurses and also a charity called SmileTrain.
“I had decided not to run for charity this year as it is usually the same friends, family and colleagues who continually donate but I feel so strongly about Help for Heroes and I don’t think our government does enough when soldiers come home disabled and traumatised.”
Mr Anderson has already collected more than £300 in donations.
He said: “I would like to say a big thank you to all my family, friends and colleagues who have already pledged support and Jem Smith, who has helped me immensely with training.”
Several thousand people will run 26.2 miles around Edinburgh in the race from 9.50am.