Six years after suffering a serious brain injury that left him struggling to walk and talk, Matt Burke is preparing to tackle the Asda Foundation Yorkshire Marathon.
Yorkshireman Matt Burke will tackle his first ever marathon this Sunday at the Asda Foundation Yorkshire Marathon six years on from a 'life changing' injury that left him struggling to walk and talk.
He will join over seven thousand runners at the University Road start line all looking to take on Yorkshire's most popular marathon.
The fact that Matt is able to take up his place is a testament to his tenacity and determination.
In June 2012 he was putting some scaffolding equipment away.
Matt, who lives in Hull, said: “I was only 5ft off the floor when the ladders gave way on me and my head landed on concrete.”
He was in hospital for a month, had to learn to walk and talk again, his eyesight was sensitive to light and he suffered short-term memory problems.
Matt, who was 28-years-old when he had his accident, said: “My recovery has been a hard and testing one - some days I just wanted to give up.
“It was my dad that got me going again. When he saw me in hospital, I remember him saying ‘I can’t believe you are 28 and I’m 54 and you’re in a Zimmer frame before me’.
“I couldn’t play football again as I couldn’t head a ball so I had to find something else to keep me active once I could walk again. I got into running and this made me fitter and more determined because I wanted to smash every goal and challenge I set.
“My training has been hard, not just physically but mentally as well. Some days I've just thought to myself 'what am I doing' and other days I've thought that I’m going to smash this session and get to where I want to be.”
Matt’s advice to other people facing similar adversity is: “You have to believe in yourself to achieve what you want to do. Little steps make big achievements. Try not to be too hard on yourself, you just have to be patient.”
If you have been inspired by Matt's story and would like to learn more about the Asda Foundation Yorkshire Marathon, please click Yorkshire Marathon.