Richard Whitehead is a double-amputee athlete.
He’s the world record holder for the marathon, running it in 2hrs 42mins. And the world record holder for the half marathon, with a time of 1:14:59.
He was told there wouldn’t be a marathon in the T42 category at the London 2012 Paralympics.
So he took up the 200 metres instead.
And now he’s the world record holder at that distance too. He recently took half a second (half a second!) off the world record. His time – 24:93.
He isn’t in it for personal gain. He’s in it to inspire people to achieve more.

He ran his first marathon to challenge himself. He ran it in a little under 5 hours. But that achievement lit a fire inside of him.
He bases his whole life on the simple thought: Believe. Achieve.
And he really does live by those words.

I first met him at a talk he gave on his preparations for the Paralympics, and what he was hoping to achieve.
And I was blown away by so many things about him. He’s got an amazing perspective on life. You can feel his infectious enthusiasm when he starts to speak.

When the organisers of the 2012 Games announced there would be no T42 marathon Rich didn’t get despondent. He simply chose another discipline. But to go from the marathon to the 200 metres is quite incredible. They’re two fantastically different disciplines. To become world champion at both shows a truly special person.
But Richard just wants to achieve for himself so he’ll have an even better platform to inspire others.
He won the International Paralympic Committee Athlete of the Month award for June this year – after knocking half a second off the world record time in the 200 metres at the European Championships.
He also represented Great Britain in ice-sledge hockey at the 2006 Winter Paralympics in Turin. This time he’s competing in the 200 metres. The race is on Saturday 1st September. He’s current world record holder and European Champion, so I reckon he’s got a great chance of the gold medal.

Rich nailing the 200 metres

You can help him. Send a message to him. Or leave a message here and I’ll forward it to him.
He’s determined to help others by continuing to inspire people long after these Paralympic Games.
He’s a remarkable man. One who should be used as an ambassador to help inspire others to challenge themselves and enjoy their lives more.
Tweet #GoRichard and let’s help Richard the way he’s helped so many others.

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