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Real Life Stories - Justine

Justine's Story

I was rubbish at PE at school, I was always chosen last at team games and was always that bit bigger than my friends. I saw exercise as something not for me, because I was never encouraged or supported.

After I had my daughter in 2004 I wanted to get fit properly, I had done the odd workout dvd at home and constantly battled with my weight. I took the plunge and joined a local gym, I found I loved the feeling after I had done a workout. I joined a new running group as a complete novice and really enjoyed it. After I finished the Taunton 10k in 2006 I remember saying I would never do that again! After having my son and him being poorly in 2008 running and all exercise went out the window! However I missed the feeling of exercising and how good you felt after doing it.

Gradually I got back into it and the running, doing Taunton Half Marathon in 2009. I have now done several half marathons and realised a childhood dream by running the London Marathon in 2017. I was so proud to have done it and there is no feeling like it when you cross the finish line! I have been a member of a couple of gyms before and enjoyed that too but now do Fitclub which is run by a local mum.

After doing a couple of run leader courses with SASP I have now run 4 beginners running groups for women, helping them achieve and seeing how elated they are from exercising is my biggest motivation. I felt like I wasn't good enough to be a run leader but SASP showed me its never about being the best but about being the best for you. I will never be the fastest or breaking any records, but exercise for me is all about helping your mental health. My exercise journey has been up and down, but the way it makes me feel and the friendships I have made along the way are a huge motivator that keeps me doing it, losing 3 stones was a bonus too! I believe that there is a exercise out there for everyone regardless of age, disability or fitness level it's finding the thing that makes you happy. Whatever you do you will be lapping everyone on the couch and that is my motto.

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