The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry join a ‘mental health marathon’ training day

9th February 2017 By: Anastasia Bow-Bertrand

On Sunday, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry joined a training day with the runners taking part in the 2017 Virgin Money London Marathon for Heads Together, the official Charity of the Year at the Olympic Park in London.

Their Royal Highnesses joined training sessions on the new London Marathon Community Track with more than 150 Team Heads Together and Anna Freud National Centre runners, along with world-record holder and three time London Marathon winner, Paula Radcliffe and British 400m record holder and London Marathon regular, Iwan Thomas.

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Heads Together is encouraging everyone running in this year’s race to make it a ‘mental health marathon.’ As well as a range of advice on nutrition, running and stretching from leading sports coaches, runners also received advice and encouragement on how they can lead from the front in achieving the campaign mission of starting millions of conversations on mental health in the build-up to marathon day.

Paula Radcliffe and Iwan Thomas also gave advice and encouragement to the runners on training and preparation, including their preferred breakfast of choice on race day. Paula also joined their Royal Highnesses in a training relay race with runners, which saw Harry speed to victory by a small margin.

During a cool down afterwards, the Duke of Cambridge gave a few words of encouragement to the runners. He said: “We want to normalise mental health, we want to get people talking about it, to make it more normal and to reduce the stigma. What you are doing and having so many of you here today, you’ve already seen the benefit of joining in, by being part of this marathon, we want to make it a mental health marathon." 

This is the first training day in a series across the country. To find out more about our runners and how to support their efforts for the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families please read our ‘meet the runners story’ here.

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