MORE used to running for parliament, Hawick MSP John Lamont is preparing to tie up his trainers and tackle the New York Marathon.
The 35-year-old Tory politician will be taking part in the New York Marathon at the start of November in aid of the Borders Osteoporosis Society.
Mr Lamont revealed he initially started running following his election to Holyrood in 2007. “I was determined not to become the typical overweight politician,” he joked.
He has since taken part in a few 10k races and half marathons, although he conceded, having never run the full 26.2 miles, this will be his first marathon.
Explaining his training to date, he said: “I usually do about 40 miles a week. I do different types of training too so I swim four mornings a week and also a bit of cycling. The spinning class at Think Fitness on Monday lunchtime is also a good work out.”
The New York Marathon is one of the largest marathons in the world, with 45,103 finishers in 2010. And along with the Boston and Chicago Marathons, it is among the pre-eminent long-distance annual running events in the United States and is one of the World Marathon Majors.
Mr Lamont said: “New York is a great city and I’m told the atmosphere is absolutely fantastic.
“I’m dreading hitting the wall but I’m definitely looking forward to crossing the finishing line (hopefully!).”
Mr Lamont, who is a patron of the Borders Osteoporosis Society, is also hoping to raise as much money as possible for the charity.
“One in two women and one in five men over the age of 50 in the UK will fracture a bone, mainly as a result of osteoporosis,” he said.
“The cause of the disease is still not fully understood, but research continues to build up a picture of the factors that influence our bone health.
“Given the growing older population in the Borders, it affects many local residents. I am therefore eager to help them in any way that I can.”
Donations can be made at his constituency office on the High Street.