There’s less than a week to go until thousands of runners set off for the London Marathon! At Slimming World, we’re so excited to be sharing the inspirational stories of our members who’ll be pulling on their running shoes to raise money for two worthwhile charities, Cancer Research UK and the Irish Cancer Society, through our own charity, SMILES.
We’ve already met superstar slimmers Maria, Jennifer and Scott, and now it’s time for the final two members of the Slimming World Marathon team to take their places at the start line and tell us their extra-special reasons for taking on the ultimate running challenge…
You can sponsor the Slimming World London Marathon 2021 team by visiting our JustGiving page here.
“I’ve beaten my demons – now I can do anything I set my mind to!”
I learned to use food for comfort when I was just nine years old, after my mum and dad split up. I’d buy doughnuts with my pocket money and then go to the corner shop and get penny sweets with the 30p change. I also used to sneakily eat spoonfuls of golden syrup. As my weight shot up, my relationship with food got worse. One day, my sister found me sobbing on the stairs and said, ‘Enough is enough. We’re joining Slimming World’.
Staying and listening to the other members helped me so much – I soaked up every word. At first, I’d hide at the back, too nervous to speak. Then, as the pounds came off, I found my confidence – and my voice – and they couldn’t stop me talking!
Hitting my target weight gave me the confidence to start being more active, and I took up running via the Couch to 5K app. Now, I can’t wait to run the London Marathon! It’s not just about stepping on the scales and seeing that number, though, it’s about gaining the life I always wanted to live.
Slimming World’s Top Target Consultant 2021, Zoe Mole, 38, has lost 4st. She lives in Dorset and runs the Corfe Mullen group. She has maintained her target weight for more than 17 years.
If you’d love to achieve your dream weight like Zoe, discover the latest Slimming World offers here.
“Doctors told me I’d never run again – now I’m taking part in my first marathon!”
I haven’t always been unhappy with my weight. As a child, I competed for my county in athletics and my dream was to be a professional athlete. Then, when I was 18, I had a serious motorbike accident that left me unable to walk. I turned to food for comfort during my recovery and, gradually, my weight crept up. After several operations, I narrowly avoided a leg amputation, but the doctors told me I’d never run again.
I eventually made a full recovery, but I continued to put weight on. Until 2016, when my doctor told me my cholesterol levels were unhealthy and my BMI put me into the highly obese catergory. I was stunned. I’d been in denial about how my weight had been affecting my health and now I realised that I might not live to see my daughter grow up if I didn’t do something about it.
With the support of my Slimming World Consultant, I gave up sugary cereals, cut back on takeaways and cooked healthy meals from scratch. I loved steak (with the fat cut off) and Slimming World chips, as well as all the pasta bake and curry recipes I picked up from the other members in group.
As the weight came off, I started to get more active by following Slimming World’s Body Magic activity programme. I joined a gym and began walking more regularly, gradually building up until those walks turned into runs. Then, in 2018, I completed the Cardiff half marathon to mark 20 years since my motorbike accident.
These days, I have a clean bill of health, I’m sleeping better and my outlook on life is so much brighter. It’s amazing to think that, just five years ago, I would have struggled to jog down my street – now I’m running the London Marathon and raising money for some very worthy causes. It’s the icing on the cake!
Sara lives in Cornwall.
MORE ON THE BLOG:
- 6 reasons why Body Magic is better with a buddy
- A 10-minute workout you can do at home
- Removing your Body Magic barriers
- “We fell in love with Body Magic”