Donato Espacito, 58 began his running journey only 3 years ago after being inspired by a friend’s charity run at the Birmingham Half Marathon to raise money and awareness for Hibbs Lupus Trust.
Little did he know that this small pocket of inspiration would lead him to race all over the world, meeting sporting legends and being selected to run for the English Masters team in 2020.
“Before I took up running I used to enjoy walking a lot so moving onto running was a tough progression for me, but with persistence it paid off. Walk before you can run. My first run lasted all of a few hundred yards and I was in pain, so I reverted to combining running slowly and walking.”
Now Donato has completed 9 marathons, multiple 20 miles, half marathons and 10K races and will be taking part in the London Marathon in April, and has been selected for the English Masters team at the 2020 Asda Foundation Yorkshire Marathon.
When he’s not out ruling the roads in races, Donato has also grown his own running empire through his YouTube Channel Run Guru Run, which showcases different races all over the world whether he’s filming and spectating or running them first hand.
“My stand out memory has to be running the NYC marathon in 2017 for many reasons, chatting with Paula Radcliffe on the streets of Manhattan and meeting Shalane Flanagan with Paula the day before she went on to win the marathon. I had injured myself 4 weeks before the race, and not being able to walk let alone run led me to some intense physio with no running for 4 weeks pre-race, I managed to finish in an amazing time. Definitely a run to remember.”
“My advice to anyone looking to start out running is don’t rush or over train, it’s a marathon not a sprint! If you are thinking of racing, start with shorter distances first and see how you get on before progressing onto longer distances. Getting started with your local running club is also a great boost to meet like minded people. Being a part of Bournville Harriers I've always got a group to keep me motivated.”
You can find Donato’s YouTube channel at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfuOenaQTUNqkhm3vQwuOWg