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"I may not be the slimmest; I may not be the youngest; but I am the healthiest I have ever been

Sarah Ridler, remote member of Run To Be community

My name is Sarah. I am 47 years old and live in Dorset. I suffer from diabetes and asthma. I am proud to be a member of the Run To Be community.

Up until just over two years ago I did no exercise at all. I got a bit of a shock one day when I went for a diabetic review and saw what the scales said.

I think the fear of all the negative side effects of being obese and being an unhealthy diabetic gave me the incentive to start doing something.

At that time, I couldn't face exercising in public so started with a wii fit.

Someone recommended a small, friendly exercise class so I went along and started exercising with some real people. I couldn't do much but it was a start.

About six months later my daughter said why not come for a run. Well... I didn't last five minutes without an inhaler, so I started using the couch to 5k app and did a couple of runs with friends.

I had all kinds of abuse shouted at me but I was determined not to be beaten.

Then one day, Nicki (a lady who taught spin class) said why not train for the Weymouth Half Marathon. She said I had the strength in my legs - I just had to overcome the mental side.

I looked into it. By then, it was November 2014 and the race was in March 2015. I entered the half marathon!

I then looked at joining a running club to get some advice and support. I found the Dorset Sole Sisters. They met on a Wednesday and that fitted in with my work life balance.

Joining the club changed my life. I have made some amazing friends. We do charity runs in fancy dress, complete in team races together and no matter what the ability, we are always there for each other.

So I ran my first half marathon in March 2015 and my second one in October 2015 and my third in March 2016.

And I completed the Brighton Marathon - my first full marathon - in April 2016.

In May 2016, I did the Big 25 Berlin (25k); in June 2016 I was part of a team for an endure24 race; and in August 2016, I did a 12 hour relay race.

In December 2016, I'm doing another half marathon. I also have a place for London Marathon in April 2017.

I started running because I wanted to be a healthier version of myself but I had no idea what that meant.

I may not be the slimmest; I may not be the youngest; but I am the healthiest I have ever been and my new motto for life is do what makes you happy.

I truly can't imagine my life without running.

I don't need races - it's the sheer enjoyment of doing something for me and the only person to compete with is myself; the only person I have to prove anything to is myself.

Sarah Ridler, remote member of Run To Be community

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