THREE workmates made strides side by side to raise money for Southampton Hospital Charity.

Colleagues Dean Millar, Diego Galusni, and Daniel Haynes, who work at the Co-operative Food store in Southampton High Street, took part in the Winchester Marafun. 

Store manager Dean ran his first marathon in memory of his dad Alex, who died last year. 

He completed the course in nearly two hours. 

Following in his footsteps was his friend Diego who completed the marathon 20 minutes later.

On the challenge, Dean said: "I sprinted down to the finish. I feel fit, but I'm 56 years old. I didn't have any pain when I was running; it was only when I stopped.

"Thirteen miles were tough and I never stopped once. It was an amazing accomplishment.

"Everyone at the finish line was banging pans and cheering you on. It was an amazing feeling."

The Hampshire’s historic hilly run event took place on September 24. 

As the runners embarked on the challenge, they passed by landmarks such as St Catherine's Hill, Winchester Cathedral, and King Alfred the Great.

Diego said for him the experience was "amazing and painful".

He added: "I'm not a runner. I've never done it before. The only reason I signed up for it was to support this incredible charity.

"When I got to eight miles, I genuinely thought about stopping, as my legs were hurting from my recent injury. 

"I had to keep reminding myself why I was doing it, and it certainly helped me to finish the race. It was a pleasure to take part in this event."

Meanwhile, Daniel, who ran the half marathon, said: "I dutifully trained in what spare time I had, but I totally overlooked the word ‘hilly' within the title-the surprise as I turned the corner and saw the never-ending steep hill in front of me nearly resulted in an about turn, but I had the charity and my own fan club of my wife and daughter cheering me on, so I dug in and got the job done."

To support Dean's, Diego's and Daniel's fundraisers, visit: