Saffron Walden Psychology student runs Virgin London Marathon for Mind

Alex Milne (centre) and his university friends Zak Green and Peter Gibson after completing the Sheff

Alex Milne (centre) and his university friends Zak Green and Peter Gibson after completing the Sheffield Half Marathon last year. - Credit: Archant

Mind games are likely to play a big apart in a psychology student’s attempts to tackle this year’s Virgin London Marathon.

Alex Milne is aiming to push himself to complete the gruelling 26.2-mile run on April 13.

And the 21-year-old Psychology degree graduate will be doing it for a good cause, raising money for the mental health charity, Mind.

“I chose Mind for a number of reasons,” said the Saffron Walden resident.

“Having recently completed a degree at the University of Sheffield, I have learnt much about mental health issues, and how common they are. I also volunteered for a charity in Sheffield helping brain damaged.

“I found this a really inspiring and uplifting experience, and it gave me motivation to go and help further.”

The chances are that most of us know of someone who has suffered from mental health issues. This could be alcoholism, depression, eating disorders and many more problems.

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Mind aims to help sufferers, through campaigns to improve services, awareness and understanding of mental health issues.

“I have seen first hand the positive effects that charities like Mind can have,” said Alex.

“A family member of mine was once an alcoholic, but managed to turn his life around thanks to help from a mental health charity, and now he is training to become a counsellor himself.”

Alex is not afraid to put in the hard graft on the road to be ready for the race.

He’s running five times per week, trying to gradually increase my distance.

He added: “I’ve been a keen runner for a few years and have competed in four half marathons, with a best time of 1 hour 33 minutes. I wanted to really push myself with the ultimate test of the marathon.

“Having so far only got as far as 13 miles, the thought of doubling that is somewhat terrifying – but I’m sure I will manage it with more training and the support of friends and family.”

• Alex hopes to raise £1,650. To donate, visit