Having already dropped from a size 24 to an 18 and with her weight stuck at a plateau, Sarah was looking for a new kick-start to her body overhaul. The 42-year-old had always dreamed of running a marathon so when a friend mentioned Eastleigh Borough Council’s Couch to 5K course, an introduction to running for absolute beginners, Sarah took the plunge and signed up.
Any concerns she may have had about being the weakest member of the group or the person who would hold the class up rapidly faded when she met the other runners. Everyone was new to running, all at the same stage, all there to support one another. It wasn't easy though. Sarah found the introductory session hellish, collapsing in a heap after the first task. But she pushed on through and, when the session came to an end, she felt absolutely amazing. It was just what she needed, the spur to carry on.
From those initial baby steps a year ago Sarah is now a regular 10K runner and continues to run weekly with members from her original Couch to 5K group. It is the support of the group that she credits for keeping her on track as without them, she says, the motivation and commitment just wouldn’t have been there.
Running has, she says, quite literally transformed her life. Her weight-loss journey continues; she is now a healthy size 12 and she is both mentally and physically strong.
Her advice to anyone thinking about getting fit?
"Have the courage to take that first step – you won't regret it."