Despite not being a ‘natural runner’ a mum of two from Ruskington is preparing to take on a half marathon - dressed as a flamingo.
Susan Edwards is to tackle the Great North Run in Newcastle upon Tyne on Sunday - in the eyecatching pink fancy dress costume.
She will do all this to raise money for the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation (RCLCF) - in memory of her late mum.
“I had the most selfless, caring mum anybody could wish for,” explained Susan, 52.
“My mum was ‘great’ and came from Newcastle, so it seemed the obvious choice.
“Unfortunately on 17th September 2007, only three months post diagnosis of small cell lung cancer, my mum passed away, surrounded by her family. My life would never be the same again. I’d give anything to have more time with my mum.
“I found out about RCLCF and opened a tribute fund, The Betty Kilburn Tribute Fund, allowing family members to raise money in her name, for this well-deserved cause.
“I have befriended some wonderful people raising money for RCLCF, not least RCLCF staff, who are so supportive and generous, and also Fiona Castle, Roy’s widow.
“There have been many challenges our family has taken on in the past. Challenges by both Glenn and Daniel, my sons, my sister Sharon, and myself. These have included sky-diving, a bungee jump, a ‘Leopard Walk’ and quizzes.”
This year Susan will take on the 13.1 mile Great North Run - her first long-distance race.
“It has been the biggest challenge I have ever taken on,” she said. “I am not a natural runner and made a humble start completing the NHS’s ‘couch to 5km’ - gradually working to run for 30 minutes non- stop. This took approximately nine weeks to complete. The furthest I have run to date is 12 miles.
“My granddaughter Molly has even been on training runs with me. When I was struggling she told me how proud I made her, and how proud my mum would be, which gave me the strength to stick at it.”
Susan said she decided to dress like a flamingo to stand out from the crowd and draw attention to both the charity’s work - and the disease itself.
“Early diagnosis saves lives,” she said. “Adding the flamingo costume has made it more difficult for me, but it will bring attention to why I’m undertaking such a mammoth challenge.”
She added: “Mum is ever my inspiration, and if the money I raise can allow a family more time with their loved one, then it’s worth it. It is a privilege to run in mum’s name for this worthy cause, and I just hope I do my family, especially my mum, proud.”
l To sponsor Susan visit www.justgiving.com/fund raising/susan-edwards18.