South Shields dad inspired to put on his running shoes by daughter’s battle with arthritis

Wayne Groves with daughter Lainie
Wayne Groves with daughter Lainie

A dad who has been inspired by his daughter’s day to day battle with arthritis will be putting his best foot forward in this year’s Great North Run.

Wayne Groves’s daughter Lainie has lived with the condition since she was diagnosed at the age of just one.

Wayne Groves

Wayne Groves

The arthritis predominately affects her jaw, back, hips, hands and knees.

Now, a teenager she also suffers from hypermobility and chronic fatigue syndrome as a result of the condition.

Wayne, from South Shields, said: “She goes through good and bad periods where some joints flare up worse than others, but she just gets on with it.

“She was home schooled for a few years and even spent time in a wheelchair as she really struggled to walk; she could only get about short distances on crutches and anything more she was confined to her wheelchair.

If she can fight the way she does then I can do this.

Wayne Groves

“She went through an intensive treatment regime for about a year that was a mix of medication and physio, as well as a great deal of hard work and patience, but it has all paid off as she has finally managed to get back into school.

“Getting to this point has really made a huge difference as she is now getting her independence back and is starting to get more confident in herself.”

On September 10, Wayne will be joining thousands of others to take his place at the starting line in Newcastle for the Simplyhealth Great North Run - and a hard road home to South Shields.

He will be running for Arthritis Research UK - a charity which will help his daughter in years to come.

Wayne, who has already taken part in the Colour Run as part of his preparation, added: “I have decided to run for Arthritis Research UK as it is a charity that will help my daughter in years to come; hopefully they can find breakthroughs in treatments that will help her even more.

“My daughter’s constant day-to- day fight with arthritis and seeing how she pushes herself to do things she doesn’t like has really inspired me to push myself and do something I really don’t like: running.

“To push myself harder than ever before I decided to sign up for the Great North Run and to do it in her honour.

“If she can fight the way she does then I can do this – that is all the motivation I need.

“She is such an inspiration to me, so I will finish this year’s Great North Run for her.”

To support Wayne’s fundraising visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/wayne-grovesgnr