Breast cancer survivor reaches 250th parkrun milestone
- Credit: Courtesy of West Norfolk CCG
A breast cancer survivor is celebrating after completing her 250th parkrun.
But there is no stopping Sue Smith, from King's Lynn, who has now set her sights on reaching the 500th milestone.
In June 2016, Mrs Smith discovered a lump and received the devastating news that she had an aggressive form of breast cancer.
She underwent a mastectomy and gruelling chemotherapy treatment, which ended in February 2017.
She said: 'It was a shock as I wasn't expecting the news that I had cancer as I hadn't been feeling ill.
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'In the end I just decided to get on with it.'
As she was battling cancer, Mrs Smith continued to volunteer and sometimes even walk the 5km King's Lynn parkrun course in The Walks.
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She has been a member of the parkrun since it began in 2007 and on Saturday, July 14, Mrs Smith was supported by her friends as she completed her milestone run.
She said: 'It was an amazing achievement to have completed my 250th parkrun. I am now going for my 500th.
'It was nice to stay in contact and give something back to parkrun. It is a really friendly event and no-one pushes you to be first.
'I would encourage other people to get involved and have a go at parkrun. It is really friendly and encouraging event, it doesn't matter if you walk and you don't have to be first.
'Everyone is really nice and it is a great way to keep fit.'
King's Lynn event director Gary Walker has praised Mrs Smith for her determination to keep going.
He said: 'Her positive nature was a source of inspiration to all who knew her and equally she found the encouragement she received from her fellow parkrunners a source of strength she could feed off during those dark days of treatment.'
West Norfolk Clinical Commissioning Group is teaming up with King's Lynn parkrun to support the parkrun practice initiative, which is aimed at encouraging more patients to undertake exercise to improve their health and wellbeing.
Estimated levels of obesity and physical activity in West Norfolk are higher than the average in England and there are also high numbers of people in West Norfolk with diabetes.