A road traffic collision in 2002 left Asif Younas laid up in bed and unable to walk without help for eight months.
Determined to get better, he had a metal rod inserted into his left leg and as soon as he was well enough he started running to help aid his rehabilitation.
Not content on running purely as a hobby, the 37-year-old Sheffield man has pushed himself to complete the Plusnet Yorkshire Half Marathon in Sheffield for the last two years, raising more than £2000 for Sheffield Children’s Hospital. The hospital has been looking after his three-year-old niece Saafa from time to time ever since she was born.
Asif said: “She’s an active girl, but has had trouble with frequent chest infections and needed an inhaler. When I started training I thought - who better to raise money for than the hospital that took such good care of her?
“Saafa knows that when I run its to raise money for the hospital that helped her. I’ve even given her one of my medals to wear and she’s always there with the rest of my family cheering me on near the finish line.”
He added: “The Sheffield Children’s Hospital helps everyone out. The more we can raise for them the better the equipment they can buy.
“It’s all about doing whatever you can to help the children get better and leave with a smile on their face.”
He completed the 2015 event in a time of one hour and 44 minutes - but he beat that this year and recorded a personal best time of one hour and 41 minutes.
Asif added: “When I go running I can just block everything out. I forget everything apart from the route I’m taking and just completely go into my zone.”
He is now encouraging runners to support the charity and sign up for the Yorkshire Marathon in York on October 9. Visityorkshirecancerresearch.org.uk