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It’s the London Marathon this weekend, and as that colourful crowd of runners streams over the capital’s iconic Tower Bridge, you might just spot some of our amazing Slimming World team. Not so long ago, they would never have imagined they’d have the fitness and confidence to run such a challenging race… But that’s before they discovered our Body Magic activity support programme. Our unique activity plan is fully tailorable, so you can go at your own pace, doing the activities you love. For our team, those small first steps eventually developed into a love of running that’s taken them further than they could ever have dreamed of!  

“I used to hate the thought of exercise” 

Being active was the last thing on Bex Rossall’s mind at her heaviest. After two broken relationships in her 20s and the tragic loss of her little sister, she was so unhappy that there were times when she couldn’t leave the house. “My weight spiralled out of control,” she says. “Every diet I tried left me feeling miserable, and I’d soon regain any weight I’d lost”.  

Weighing 14st 10lbs, she decided to join her local Slimming World group. As the weight came off and her confidence grew, she started going for walks with her partner, Phil. Then, with her stamina improving, she decided to download the Couch to 5k app. Now she’s 5st 2lbs lighter, Bex, who’s 37 and a Slimming World Consultant, just loves to run. Raising money for Cancer Research UK this weekend means a lot to her, as she lost two grandparents to cancer and  although she never dreamed she’d run, let alone run a marathon  she’s raring to go! 

“Running makes me feel like I can do anything” 

Slimming World member Beth Stratford has completely changed the way she thinks about herself since becoming more active. “Growing up, most of my friends were fit and healthy – and on all the sports teams – while I couldn’t even run one lap of the track!” she says. 

Everything changed after the 26 year old joined Slimming World so she could feel fabulous on her wedding day. Inspired by her group to give the Body Magic activity programme a go, she gradually started running – going on to complete a half-marathon and achieve a 3st 3lbs weight loss. “I’ve realised my body can do more than I ever gave it credit for,” says Beth.  

“We both used to struggle just to walk!” 

Husband-and-wife duo Tim and Ruth Mortlock found activity difficult before they lost weight. For Tim, who weighed 22st 1½lbs, it was due to agonising back pain after suffering a slipped disc, while Ruth, who weighed more than 20st, would get so tired walking short distances that she’d have to have a sit-down. “Joining Slimming World turned out to be the best decision we’ve ever made,” says 43-year-old Ruth.  

With the support of our Body Magic activity support programme, the couple began walking together. Then Tim started going for runs, and Ruth, taking it at her own pace, eventually joined him. “Now we’ve each lost more than 9st, and we’ve been well and truly bitten by the running bug,” says Tim, 44. “We’re looking forward to representing Slimming World in this year’s London Marathon and raising money for Cancer Research UK – it’s a charity close to our hearts, as I lost both my mum and grandfather to the illness.” 

Read Tim and Ruth’s full story here: “It’s going to be one of those pinch me moments!”

“Being a healthy mum means the world to me” 

Following severe complications during her C-section, Sian Redman-Jama, 38, couldn’t even push her son’s pram. Slimming World’s Body Magic programme helped her build up gradually from doing just five-minute walks to 30-40 minutes a day. With her confidence boosted, she started jogging, using the Couch to 5k app to gradually pick up her pace.  

“Running is something I never had the confidence to do before losing weight,” says Sian, who’s lost 8st 2lbs with Slimming World. Now, she’s full of energy and loves being an active, healthy mum. Sian can’t wait to run the London Marathon and raise money for Cancer Research UK, having lost her grandad and aunt to cancer in recent years.  

Read Sian’s full story here: “I almost died giving birth. Now my family’s health is top priority.”

“Body Magic helped me rediscover activity” 

“I’m fitter than I’ve been in 15 years!” says Brodie Marks, who’s lost 5st 4½lbs after discovering a healthier way to eat with Food Optimising. Brodie used to be a runner but lost her confidence after putting on weight. 

Brodie switched her fast-food meals and snacks for pasta cooked in home-made sauces, and as the number on the scales came down, her confidence rocketed. Soon, she felt ready to use the Body Magic programme to ease herself back into running… and just look at her now! Brodie lost her grandma to throat cancer, so she can’t wait to raise money for Cancer Research UK this weekend. 

“I’d always skip PE at school” 

Unhappy with his weight since his teens, Ben Stothard used to avoid sports lessons. After being diagnosed with depression in 2019, the 33-year-old pub landlord decided to join Slimming World. He was delighted to discover Food Optimising worked perfectly with his lifestyle and he became adept at cooking up healthier versions of the meals that satisfied his appetite – with chilli con carne at the top of the list. 

“I tried to run, but I found that too difficult, so I bought a bike and I really enjoyed the freedom of cycling,” say Ben. Then, with his confidence soaring and fitness levels rising, Ben had another go at running, starting slowly and using the Body Magic programme to support his progress. Now he’s lost 2st 9½lbs, he runs three times a week and he’s already completed a half-marathon. This weekend he’s going all out for the London Marathon, raising money for Cancer Research UK in honour of a very close family friend who’s currently in remission from cancer.    

Click here to meet the rest of our amazing marathon team – Frank McLoughlin, Dawn Attwood, Ian Muncaster, Rachel Falcus and Natalie White – and find out how things went on race day! 

Would you love to join Team Slimming World for the London Marathon 2023? If you’re a Slimming World member, you can find out more and download an application form here – but be quick, as applications close on 12th October 2022. Ready, steady… read! 

Click here to find your nearest Slimming World group
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