Nick and I are running the Stockholm Marathon in June. It’s going to be our first marathon and we need all the support we can get. Before you consider dismissing us as completely insane (which we are!), we’re running to raise awareness for a rare, progressive genetic condition called Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency, which affects the lungs and liver. In August 2016, I was diagnosed with this condition, which very often presents symptoms as breathing problems while exercising. After research and many doctor’s visits, the symptoms are now under control. This wouldn’t have been possible, though, without advocacy and awareness, primarily through the charity, Alpha 1 Awareness UK (www.alpha1awareness.org.uk), where I am now serving as a board member.
By crossing that finish line together, we hope to inspire those who are currently affected that this condition doesn’t have to stop you from doing what you love. Onwards and upwards!
3rd May 2017
Well it wasn’t easy, and I had to use my rescue inhaler afterwards because I was coughing so badly, but Nick and I finished the Stockholm Marathon!
This condition has made me so angry and frustrated and despondent and it constantly makes doing what I love so difficult, but I’m honored to have represented this charity and its members today. If it’s one thing I know, it’s that even the strongest and most resolute of us need help sometimes, and I don’t know where I’d be without the help and support of this charity.
Thank you all so much for your support and being there for me. I only hope I can continue to pay it forward to other Alphas in need. Onwards and upwards!
(Click on any of the photos to see a larger version)