Bangor woman, Lesley Heaney has decided to take on the Diabetes UK Swim 22 challenge which will see her complete the 22 mile equivalent distance of the English Channel in her local swimming pool, Bangor Aurora.
After getting a few swimming lessons under her belt and being keen to take on a challenge with a difference whilst getting fitter herself, Lesley began the swimming challenge on 22 February.
Lesley said, ‘As a novice swimmer it came as a bit of a surprise to my family when I said I wanted to do Swim 22 but I am so pleased with the progress I have made so far. I have completed over 15 miles now and I am so pleased I have kept at it, fitting in my lengths whenever I can.
‘There have been days when I couldn’t face the swimming pool, juggling work with children and seemingly no time in between. I realise now that if you make time, it works. I have until 22 May to complete my 22 miles and I am delighted to say that I am well on my way to reaching that target.
‘This challenge really interested me as I was keen to get fit and to be able to do something worthwhile for a local charity was an added benefit. I know that there are so many families in Northern Ireland living with this condition so hopefully the money I raise from this challenge will be able to help. I would definitely recommend people to get involved and do something, even if at first, it seems out of reach. I am proof that you can do it, from novice to Nemo, I will just keep swimming!’
Our National Fundraiser Naomi Breen, said, ‘Lesley has set herself a target of reaching £500 for completing Swim 22 and she is so close now to reaching it. We would like to thank her for diving in at the deep end with this challenge and for helping us to raise awareness about diabetes. We couldn’t do what we do if it wasn’t for people like Lesley helping us reach more people, helping them in their journey with diabetes.
‘Diabetes is serious. It is affecting over 100,000 people in Northern Ireland and we cannot ignore it. No one should feel like they have to face diabetes alone so we want to equip people with the information and support they need to fight it every day at a time. Thank you to Lesley for inspiring us all with her story – hopefully you too will get involved and help us get closer to our vision of a world where diabetes can do no harm.’
If you would like to support her Swim 22 challenge go to Lesley Heaney's JustGiving page.