A DAD from Cirencester has started a gruelling training regime in preparation for running the London Marathon in just under two months time.

Stuart Dennis, of Coates Lane, has been training six days out of every seven for the 26.2 miles race through the capital.

“The training is probably harder than the actual thing. I go for a long run on Saturdays of about 15 miles, followed by a swim on Sunday and then I go to the gym during the week,” he said.

The 46-year-old, who works as a health and safety advisor, ran the marathon last year and is hoping to improve on his time.

He said: “Last year my time was over four hours. There’s nine weeks to go before the race and I’m hoping to get a time of three hours, 59 minutes and 59 seconds. In fact, anything under four hours would be ideal.”

Stuart, who last year raised £2,500 for the Children’s Liver Disease Foundation, is this year running in support of the Motor Neurone Disease Association.

“My father-in-law died from that disease around 10 years ago, so to raise money for that charity seemed like the obvious choice for me,” he said.

“I’d love to be to top the amount I raised last year, the more the merrier really.”

With one London Marathon already under his belt, Stuart is well versed on just how difficult the 26.2 mile race can be.

He said: “The part of the race between miles 15 and 20 is definitely the hardest. You are a long way off the finish line and you really have to push yourself to keep going.”

“Once you have past mile 20, you know that you’ve got less than an hour less to run and it starts to get easier.”

After completing this year’s challenge, Stuart will be looking to hit the road again and take part in either the Paris or Berlin marathon.

Anybody who would like to sponsor Stuart can do so by logging on to www.virginmoneygiving.com/stuartdennis.