An inspirational runner, who has lost over nine stone since December 2016, is lacing up her trainers to take on her hardest challenge yet to raise money for The Sick Children’s Trust – the Virgin Money London Marathon 2018.
41 year old Becs Hurst, from West Wickham, Kent, has gone from star baker to marathon runner in less than a year after discovering her love of running. Becs, who owns online bakery business Auntie’s Cupcakes, began running in March last year after joining her local parkrun UK in Bromley and since then has conquered many 5kms, 10kms, a half marathon and completed an ultra 100km walk in 26hours.
Later this year, on Sunday 22 April, Becs will join thousands of runners in the UK’s most iconic race, taking on the Virgin Money London Marathon to raise money for The Sick Children’s Trust, a charity that supports families with seriously ill children in hospital with free ‘Home from Home’ accommodation. Becs, who works in Early Years, says:
“I started being able to run in March 2017 and struggled to run 100 metres and now I’m training for a marathon! It’s not been without highs and lows, but with thanks to lots of support from friends, family, the running community and Andy at Bromley parkrun UK – I have managed to achieve so much.
“I started running to help with my mental health mainly, rather than weight loss, as I had a lot of stress and anxiety which had me reaching for the fridge. Running became my new way of taking control and really made a difference to my emotional wellbeing and has in turn helped me lose nearly ten stone!
“To be running the London Marathon is a dream come true. As my confidence has grown, I’ve wanted to push myself further and this marathon is the ultimate challenge. I’m excited and scared but know that I will make it around that course. Not only because I am determined to do it for myself, but because I’m doing it for The Sick Children’s Trust – a charity very close to my heart – and all the families it helps stay together when their children are undergoing lifesaving treatment in hospital.”
The Sick Children’s Trust runs ‘Home from Home’ accommodation across the country, supporting around 4,000 families with seriously ill children in hospital. Although the accommodation is free for families, it costs the charity £30 to support a family for one night in a ‘Home from Home’. Becs continues:
“Since 2015 I have been volunteering with The Sick Children’s Trust, helping with its Big Chocolate Tea fundraising campaign because of my love of baking – and because of the incredible work the charity does. The charity is there for families with seriously ill children in hospital and gives them free ‘Home from Home’ accommodation – keeping them together so that no child is alone in hospital. And in these cold, dark, wintery nights that thought is what keeps me pushing through and putting one foot in front of the other, because if I can raise £2,000 for this amazing charity I know that I will be helping so many more families stay together during the most traumatic times.
“And although my baking may have taken a little bit of a backseat to running, I love that I can continue to support the charity through my other new found love!”
Last year, London Marathon runners raised £30,000 for The Sick Children’s Trust which supported 1,000 families with ‘Home from Home’ accommodation, allowing families with seriously ill children in hospital to be just minutes from their loved ones. Victoria McElhinney, Events Officer at The Sick Children’s Trust, says:
“Becs is such an inspiration and we’re delighted to welcome her onto #TeamSCT for the London Marathon. Becs is a dedicated and very enthusiastic supporter who brings so much cheer to marathon training – she even popped out for a run just before Christmas as an elf, achieving a personal best!
“As a charity, we rely entirely on voluntary donations to keep our ‘Homes from Home’ running. Without supporters like Becs, we simply wouldn’t be able to help as many families with sick children in hospital.
“We can’t thank Becs enough for everything she has done over the years and for taking on the London Marathon for us and all the families who we support. We will be there with her, every step of the way, cheering her on. Good luck Becs!”
If you would like to cheer Becs on at one of The Sick Children’s Trust’s cheering points on Sunday 22 April, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
For further information about The Sick Children’s Trust, please visit http://www.sickchildrenstrust.org/