A SHEFFIELD man who didn’t take a step until he was five is to run the Sheffield Half Marathon - and he’s doing it with his dad.
Christopher Gold, aged 25, will be running with dad Stewart to raise money for the Children’s Hospital, where he received treatment for Cerebral Palsy.
The condition affects the brain and nervous system and has meant Christopher has been treated at the hospital for more than 16 years.
Stewart, aged 51, said: “Christopher was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy shortly after he was born, as well as being partially sighted and having learning and speech difficulties.
“He wore splints to support his legs and we didn’t know if he’d ever be able to walk, but because of the care he received he’s surpassed all expectations.
“He wouldn’t be able to do half of the things he does now if it wasn’t for the doctors, nurses and therapists.
“Running really is a massive challenge for him. We run tethered together - both holding on to a piece of a rope - so I can guide him.”
Christopher’s condition creates stiffness in his legs, caused by disrupted nerve signals between the brain and the muscles, leading to difficulties with movement, posture and coordination.
As a child he received physiotherapy at Ryegate Children’s Centre in Broomhill.
Stewart, from Manor, said: “When Christopher told me he wanted to train with me I was sceptical because he still struggles with walking but I can’t believe how well he’s done.
“We started off really slowly and because he’s so determined we’ve never missed a training session together.”
The pair run three nights a week and even go out in snow and ice.
“Currently he runs out of steam at about 11 miles, but we are confident we’ll cross the finish line in Sheffield this May – and we’re so pleased we can do something to give back to the hospital which got Chris to where he is today,” said Stewart.
They are running for The Children’s Hospital Charity’s ‘Run with Us campaign’, supported by Olympic gold medallist Jessica Ennis.
Christopher said: “I wanted to give it a go myself for a personal challenge. I really enjoy spending the quality time with dad, too.”
Tonya Kennedy from the charity, said: “Christopher’s story is so inspiring and we’re thrilled he and Stewart are taking on this massive challenge together in support of our charity.”
Money raised will go towards the campaign.