Ladybower 35 Mile Ultra Marathon For Torre Argentina In Memory of Gianburrasca & Posiedone

Update posted by Fiona Shaw On Apr 15, 2018

Hi All

If you are still reading these blog entries! Just a quick message after the Marathon last week. I had such a busy week I didn't find a moment to write on here and say thanks to everyone for their support.

The marathon was not at all easy, for more ways that just running 26.2 miles. I ran with a heavy heart when I had found out just before that my son Posiedone was not doing so well. His kidneys were abandoning him and I knew that by the time I finished the run he would be gone.

I was scared to check my phone to read the message from Monica as I knew what it would be. He passed away at 12 o clock Roma time, 11 o clock UK time and 2 hours into my run. Probably just around half way.

I had a generally good run, the first mile I was running a good fast strong pace, probably too fast but I ran to how i felt. I had emotions running through my body which came in waves, I was happy, I was proud, I was lost, I was sad and I was angry. Angry thinking how cruel life can be sometimes. I was sad because no matter what we do sometimes we just cant change the inevitable and things happen which are out of our control.

I finished the race with a personal best time of 4 hours 54 minutes. I am happy with that as I did struggle between miles 22 to 26. I was in a dark place and I couldn't pull myself out. The whole time I was thinking about Posiedone.

The last miles of the course cover an area where the road is long and straight and there is nothing all around, its sparse and not even countryside, just what you may say a road with grass on either side, nothing to look at, no people, and the other runners started to walk and I felt the atmosphere changing. I had to push myself to keep going and remain strong.

Finally I knew with a mile to go I was almost done. I wanted to finish. As I came through the finish line I saw my amazing husband Jon waiting for me. He had also run and finished in a great time of 4 hours 18 minutes. When I got to him I started to cry. I felt so emotional and so exhausted. I was glad to finish.

So the race was complete and Posiedone was gone. A mixture of emotions. I did what I know well and I wrote his tribute to him. One I felt had to be fit for a king. In those days the outpouring of love told me what I already knew. He was a special boy. He was loved. He had touched a million hearts.

He was my son.

I was so proud of him.

This little boy from Rome who had stolen all the hearts around the world. Everyone was so sad but I felt proud of him and felt so much love for him but so much pain at losing him before i even had the chance to meet him. I will never have a photo of me and him and that makes me so sad.

At least with Gianburrasca I have the most wonderful photo to cherish always.

It made me realise life really is short. We should love hard, love strong and live because tomorrow is never promised.

So because of these awful circumstances and because things happen and change I will be running still for Gianburrasca but I will also be running to honour the life and memory of Posiedone too.

All the cats at Torre Argentina will benefit from every single penny raised however Poisedone is gone so instead will honour him. I will run for them both and I will run for them all.

So back to training today and I shall continue to celebrate them. They brought so much to my life even from afar and now i will honour theirs.


Thank you

Fiona, Gianburrasca & Posiedone xxxx


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Update posted by Fiona Shaw On Mar 11, 2018

Hi All! Just a little update to say how happy I am that we have gone over the £1200 mark!!! This is truly incredible and would not have been possible without each and everyone of you!!!! I am so humbled by the support and especially in the past week where many of my friends from around the world released a video that had been secretly made to support me during my running. I was so emotional and overwhelmed by this gesture and still cant believe it!!! It was so kind and thoughtful! I feel like you are all part of my journey with me which is fantastic for I do not feel alone! My training is going well and I am feeling strong. I hope better days are coming with the weather and my running will build and build. I am so humbled as I already mentioned by every single person who sends a lovely kind word or who has donated. It means so very much to me!!!! I certainly have the best friends around and I know this money raised will help so much for Torre Argentina - a place we all hold dear to us in so many ways. Thank you all and I will post another update soon! Today I have been thinking a lot about Gianburrasca as a video popped up on my memory feed and it made me smile but also made me feel a bit sad that he is not here anymore. The good thing is that this keeps his memory alive and always I shall speak his name!! The littlest cat with the biggest heart - I love you Gianburrasca and I always will! xxx

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Update posted by Fiona Shaw On Feb 10, 2018

Hi Everyone!

I thought I would write a short summary to let you all know how my running is going.

Well... its going great! I have been able to run consistently throughout January which was my goal! I managed to run every second day through the month. This was important to create a routine and also to be strict with myself. I actually looked forward to running every day and immediately started to feel the benefits of it and fitter!

February came around before I even know it and so it was time to up my game and my weekday short runs of 3miles (5km) to start off my base level fitness had to increase. I decided for now 4 miles is good, its around a 40-45 minute run which is do-able and I can start to play around with further distances when it becomes a bit lighter in the mornings. It is still quite dark when I set out however is coming light by the end of the run which is great!

My weekend long runs I have also increased and today I ran 10 miles, I have never ever run so far at the start of training which means that I do have fitness there and can improve greatly I hope!!

I felt fine and my body was strong, my legs were loose and I was running well. The only problem was the weather but I can live with that, as long as my feet and legs are working hard then it doesn't matter.

I have been so overwhelmed by the generosity of people who have been kind enough to donate to the fundraising page! Today it went over £700 and I still have months to go, this is what keeps me motivated as I know how much this will help so many cats at the Torre Argentina. They are so worthy of this money and every penny is for them!I am so honoured to be able to run for them and even more so to honour Gianburrasca's life in a way that I know how. To run. Simply run.

There are so many kind hearted people in the world and I am so happy to have become friends with so many of them and it makes me feel part of something great and good, to know people who are like minded and who all want the same thing, its truly inspiring! And of course as I always say the world is small when we have technology! We can do anything we put our minds to.

So thank you for the support and encouragement, its always helpful to me and you never know when it might be needed the most, on a hard day, or a sad day a kind word goes a long way.

The donations make this all worthwhile and I thank every one of you! The cats are going to be so happy.

I will update another soon and until then I will just keep on running.


All my love and never ending thanks

Fiona xxxxx



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Update posted by Fiona Shaw On Jan 09, 2018

Hello All!

I shall be updating this as I go along through my training journey. I started this weekend on Saturday with a nice 4 mile run. Steady pace and it felt good! I had no music on which was good for me as often I use this to help in longer runs. So for as long as possible I will try to run with just me and my thoughts, The weather was quite cold and the day after my legs felt tender as I havent run since before my holiday in October, infact it might even have been Ladybower 20 miler in September. I know I can spring into shape quickly and build up my base level fitness and the moment my aim is to run every second day for January. So I ran again 2 days later with every day in between as a rest day. I havent run in the morning for a while but I enjoy it. I was even up before my husband who goes swimming very early. Me running in the dark streets when its quiet, its so peaceful. Just over 5km but its fine. The longer miles will come. I shall towards the end be running double run days, running in the morning and evening to simulate tired legs for when the pain really starts to kick in.

I will update more later but this is just to tell you I have indeed started my mission and the donations are doing so much to keep me positive and most of all focused! I have so much love in my heart for this place in Rome and most of all the cats and the wonderful volunteers. If I could scoop them up and move them to me I would but the best solution would be to move there and just live in the area sacred or the nursery perhaps :)

I will keep running!!!

Thanks for your ongoing support for the cats!

Fiona xxxx

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Update posted by Fiona Shaw On Dec 31, 2017

I have always enjoyed running and I am always up for a challenge! I completed the London Marathon earlier this year and its one of the only races I ran just for me and for my own pleasure. I enjoyed every moment of that race. I want to do something in 2018 where I will be able to help a charity by fundraising and the one place that feels so special and worthy to me is the wonderful Torre Argentina in Rome!It was an obvious choice.

When I visited I was made to feel so welcome and have since started to "volunteer at a distance" writing for them on their social media. The people are wonderful and work so so hard! The cats who come here are very lucky for many arrive in a bad way. They are given a lifelong home if they cannot be re-homed due to disabilities or some even may be too feral and find their own way of coping and often retreat to their own solace within the ruins on the site. Many are blind, missing legs, have suffered trauma from car accidents, some have ears removed due to cancer from the warm Roman sun and many require a lot of medical care.

Many just live happily in the nursery where people from all around the world visit them everyday and they are pampered with tulip beds, private fountains, chicken and fish parties on the weekend and endless cuddles! Each cat is unique and special in their own way but one boy caught my heart and the hearts of many others too! Sweet Gianburrasca who sadly passed away on the 11th August 2017.

I never really recovered from his passing and I don't know why, maybe I don't need to know why, it just is the way it is sometimes but there is not a day goes by when I don't think of him. He was wonderful and I continue to carry him with me in my heart as I go through life. This run is a wonderful way to honour his memory to raise money for the other cats who still need help and care.

The race is certainly a tough one having done this on the 20 mile course twice already! I have an extra 15 miles to run and its not a forgiving course... uphill..downhill.... track... grass... shale....twisty, and once I even got lost and ended up doing 23 miles by mistake...oops... now I know the course I hope that wont happen again.. especially on the 35 miles...!!! My husband will also be running and he will do the 50 mile race! So its a joint effort and a husband and wife team. I shall run with pride in my soul and love in my heart for the ones I hold dear to me. To all the volunteers I thank you for all the hard work you do! This race is and will be hard but small in comparison to what you do everyday. Thank you!!!
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Thank you for your beautiful words Candice and I feel the same about you :) xxxxxxxxx

Fiona Shaw

Update posted by Jan 07

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You maded me cry Fiona, you’re a so beautiful person. I’m very lucky to have a friend like you and TA is very lucky to have a volunteer at distance like you ! Thank you TA, thank you volunteers, thank you volunteer Fiona. I send you love and courage ! Candice

Candice Denuit

Update posted by Jan 07

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We will continue to support you, to support TA, thank you so much for all the things that you do for the cats ... with love xxxxx

Candice Denuit

Backed with £25.00 On Apr 19, 2018

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Love and cheers to Fiona from Marianne

Marianne Havndrup

Backed with £300.00 On Apr 08, 2018

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I'm so proud of you!!!! Poseidone, Ray Charles and I...

Birgit Hartung-Berkhan

Backed with £40.00 On Apr 07, 2018

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Good Luck Fee, if you need any training tips just give me a shout...lol

Paul Shaw

Backed with £25.00 On Apr 07, 2018

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Happy Easter to everyone on 2, 3 or 4 legs at Torre Argentina!

Lisbeth Larsen

Backed with £40.00 On Mar 30, 2018

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Been meaning to get around to this for a while. I think you are amazing doing this for our lovely TA cats and the fantastic people that look after them. Hope you don't have too many blisters from the training :)

Pat Grove

Backed with £60.00 On Mar 17, 2018

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Step by step...

Lisbeth Larsen

Backed with £20.00 On Mar 16, 2018

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Jean McBryar

Backed with £25.00 On Mar 15, 2018

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We should get past the £ 1.200!

Lisbeth Larsen

Backed with £10.00 On Mar 11, 2018

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fantastic fundraising effort Fiona ,go you ....amazing

jan whyman

Backed with £30.00 On Mar 10, 2018

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