A Lichfield charity worker, who has just completed three gruelling assault course challenges, is setting up a running club in a bid to raise funds for the Cure Parkinson’s Trust.
Paula Young, a 38-year-old mum of two from Fradley, hit the headlines when she took part in the Survival of the Fittest 10k challenge in Nottingham last October and raised over £400 for a terminally ill friend.
Now she has set her sights on completing a marathon but admits she needs some encouragement to get out training in the winter months.
“My dad and a close friend have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in recent years so I know how this debilitating illness can hit people both young and old,” said Paula, who works for Cancer Research UK.
“I’m hoping that setting up a small running club in Fradley will give me – and others – the encouragement needed to get out there and train in the winter months.
“Although I’ve done a few assault course challenges this year it’s been a long time since I’ve run more than 10k and I’m not very fast.
“I’m hoping to get together a group of like-minded women of any ability to give each other the support and encouragement they need to achieve whatever target they set themselves. It doesn’t matter if that’s just getting fit enough to run non-stop for more than a few minutes. When I started I couldn’t run for more than a minute without having to stop and catch my breath.
“I’m not planning to do the marathon until 2013 so I’ve given myself a lot of time to get fit and raise much needed funds.”
Paula’s most recent challenge was completing the ‘Wild Thing’ course organised by AAA Adventure in Ashbourne on Sunday, September 25. The course involved wading through a swamp, crossing a river on a tightrope and and sliding down a 40ft waterslide into a pool.
Her fourth and final assault course challenge this year will be the Survival of the Fittest at Battersea Power Station in London on Saturday, November 12.
Paula hopes to raise £2,500 for The Cure Parkinson’s Trust. Around 120,000 people in the UK have the degenerative neurological condition which is said to be incurable. Of those, one in every 20 is under the age of 40.
Anyone interested in joining the running group on a Monday night from 7.30pm should contact Paula on 07783 416888.
To sponsor Paula log onto www.justgiving.com/Paula-Young.