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Mercer – title sponsors of the Surrey Half Marathon – are a global consulting leader in talent, health, retirement, and investments; they help clients around the world advance the health, wealth, and performance of their most vital asset – their people.

The working culture at Mercer is such that employees are strongly encouraged to engage in healthy lifestyle choices. Leading by example, Mercer enter an increasingly large team of employees every year into their sponsored event. All members of the team are of different running abilities, but from expressing concern about signing up to training tips and beyond, they are all united and motivated by sharing their entire half marathon experience with their colleagues. They are proud to sponsor an event which offers FREE training plans upon entry – giving every runner the best possible chance of completing the challenge, regardless of their previous ability. Enter the Mercer Surrey Half Marathon.

This year we will hear from 3 “Team Mercer” colleagues in the lead up to what, for Hayley Grafton, will be her very first Half Marathon…

“I’m not a runner”

This is a phrase that Team Mercer runner Hayley now realises has held her back throughout her previous sporting endeavours.

“I watched my friends get into the sport seamlessly, I saw people throughout school, uni, and work, heading on a run like it was nothing. How did they do it?? “

Hayley explains that in 2017 she tired of watching others “doing” and was inspired to do something herself. Setting her sights big, she signed up for an Ironman 70.3. “0 – 100 real quick!” she adds.

Throughout her months of training she was haunted by those words “I’m not a runner” and unfortunately did not complete the challenge. “Why would you do that knowing you weren’t a runner?” she recalls asking herself.

We know all well that for many people this first major hurdle really can be the end the road for running, but fortunately that’s not the end of the story for Hayley – who found support from colleagues at work.

“It wasn’t until I started working alongside some great runners at Mercer that I realised, maybe my fitness wasn’t to blame for my “DNF” and inability to run… Maybe it was my attitude.”

“Yes, it sounds cheesy, and I was reluctant to believe it at first. But all the negative self-talk wasn’t exactly helping me cross the finish line! So this September, I picked my training back up, and left “I’m not a runner” at the door.” 

“It’s been difficult, and there have been times I’ve almost given up. But in the last 3 months, I’ve gone from quitting at 1km, to running 5kms, and beyond – goals I thought I’d never achieve! So here I am, moving on to the next goal – the Surrey Half Marathon. Having watched the organisation that’s gone into it, I can tell you it’s going to be a good one.”

Whether its 2km or 20km, anyone can be a runner. It really is all about mentality! Remember, as soon as you enter the Mercer Surrey Half Marathon (o 5km) you get a FREE training plan. So what are you waiting for? Enter the Mercer Surrey Half Marathon.

About Mercer

Mercer make a difference in the lives of more than 115 million people every day by advancing their health, wealth and careers. They are a global consulting leader, in the business of creating more secure and rewarding futures for clients and their employees. Mercer’s more than 20,000 employees are based in 43 countries and the firm operates in over 140 countries. They see people’s current and future needs through a lens of innovation, and their holistic view, specialized expertise, and deep analytical rigor underpin each and every idea and solution they offer. For more than 80 years, Mercer have turned insights into actions, enabling people around the globe to live, work, and retire well.