12 Hour Spinathon.

Not only in Ireland but all over the world our lives have been completely changed. The results of Covid-19 have effected the way we live, the way we socialise, the way we work, etc. Like most, when I was faced with the enforced closure of my workplace at the beginning of March I could never have anticipated the length of time it would be for. As time went on I realised that I had two options. Option one; was to continue on a negative cycle of staying in bed till all hours, not eating well, having the usual "few" drinks at home and not looking after myself. This did nothing for both my physical or mental health. Option two; I could use this opportunity to better my health both physically and mentally. I could use this time to become fitter, to become more aware of what I was eating, to reflect, to improve from a personal point of view and to implement changes in my life that needed to happen. Thankfully, I chose option two. We continuously see/hear on social media, the TV, and the radio how the mental health of so many has been affected by the results of this global pandemic. It affected mine too but exercise became like my medicine and it has now become a huge part of my lifestyle. As a result of my new found enthusiasm and approach towards healthy living, I have set myself a challenge. On the 19th of December 2020 I will be attempting to complete a 12 hour spinathon in aid of Breast Cancer Ireland and Purple House Cancer Support. Both charities hold a personal meaning to me, which is why I feel it is important to share a little bit of my story and the reasons behind this.

I chose Breast Cancer Ireland because, on the 21st of November 1997 my mum unfortunately lost her battle with Breast Cancer. I was five years old when she passed away. As a child I knew no different but as I got older I began thinking about my mum a little bit more each day. She would come into my mind during significant moments in my life such as my debs, my 21st, the day I found out I got accepted into college and the day I graduated with my degree. I remember little things about my mum and I'm lucky that I get to hear countless stories about her, which undoubtedly embody the incredible person she was. There are numerous things that stand out from these stories but for me the most comforting and in someway the most important is when I hear how incredibly strong she was and how she always showed such a kind and caring nature to anyone who crossed her path. Over the last two/three years one thing that I have come to realise is that although my mum may not be in my life from a physical perspective she is and will always be one of my biggest inspirations. My mum has thought me the importance of being strong, the importance of being as brave as I can in any life situations and the importance of being kind to people. It is with this that I want to do something in memory of her because I know if she was here, she herself would be fundraising to the brim, especially if it was anything to do with kids as she not only idiolised her own children, she worked with children for most of her life. My mum loved nothing more than a good laugh and would always be the first to get up and start singing or dancing any opportunity she got which is why I am determined to make this event as fun as it can possibly be and I have no doubt in my mind that my mum will be with me every single step of the way in spirit!!!!

I chose Purple House Cancer Support because of the support they offer to families affected by cancer and in particular the work they do with children. In August of last year my older brother Stephen was diagnosed with brain cancer. Stephen has had every reason to be negative and give up but from day one he has faced this continuous battle head on. He has endured brain surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy and even when dealing with the after affects of that he still has managed the strength to continue fighting this battle for not only himself but also for his wife and two children. Stephen has been a huge inspiration for me behind organising this spinathon. Whilst going through radiotherapy and chemotherapy he refused to stay at home or stay in bed but instead chose to get out everyday. He would run up to 8k and go to the gym. This to me is a true testament to his character and the type of person he is. 


Breast Cancer Ireland was established to raise funding to support pioneering research programmes nationally. They also aim to educate women of all ages on the importance of Breast Health. Their ultimate mission is to transform Breast Cancer from being a fatal disease into a treatable long term illness. Research is a clinical factor. One in nine women in Ireland alone are affected by Breast Cancer and research is vital in advancing a cure to this devastating disease. In order to be able to continue with their research funding is hugely instrumental!!


Purple House Cancer Support was founded in 1990 and is Ireland's first community based cancer support centre. They offer numerous of services to people who have been affected by cancer. These services include; monthly cancer support groups, a confidential telephone support service, counselling on a one to one basis, psychotherapy and bereavement counselling, survivorship programmes such as the Purple House choir and physical activity programmes. They support children and teenagers who area dealing with or who have a family member or friend affected by cancer through their CLIMB programme, play therapy, art therapy and social outings. 

I appreciate all the support that people can give to these two fantastic and worthy charities and I hope to see as many people as possible at the Magic Roundabout on the 19th of December to cheer me on.

Sarah X



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