Press release -
Local stroke survivor’s Resolution to Run for Stroke Association
Hayley Mars, 24 from Preston, is taking part in her first ever Resolution Run in aid of the Stroke Association, after surviving a stroke in 2016 when she was just 22.
Hayley will take on the 15km charity run at Heaton Park, Manchester on Sunday 07 April 2019.
Hayley said: “I cycled a lot and I wasn't overweight. I didn't take part in any behaviours associated with risk factors for stroke and I don't have a family history of stroke. It seemed to come out of the blue. Just bad luck.
“However, I was fortunate that it was a minor stroke. I recognised the symptoms straight away, meaning that the NHS were able to act quickly and prevent wide-spread damage. I lost a bit of my sense of direction and felt confused, but these were small problems which resolved within a week or two.
“The greatest impact my stroke had on me was on my sense of self. When that sense of invincibility is shaken, it doesn't feel great. As a result, I allowed my misfortune to overshadow my identity, allowing it to define me through self-pity. Thankfully that stage has passed!”
It transpired Hayley had a hole in her heart which she was advised most likely allowed the stroke to happen, and she underwent an operation to have it closed.
Hayley added: “It's almost two years since my operation and the whole incident feels so far in the past that it doesn't seem real. In many ways, I am grateful for my stroke. It gave me perspective and changed my outlook on life. It made me appreciate those around me and the support they gave me during that testing period of my life. It made me appreciate my own resilience.
I was extremely lucky to have such a support network around me. However, I know that this isn't always the case. The Stroke Association contacted me with support and advice and caught up with me several times during my ordeal. They were friendly, helpful, and just excellent.
“I'm taking part in the Resolution Run to help other stroke survivors get the support they need and to draw a line under my own experience. I'm fit and healthy now and finally feel as though I've come to terms with the fact that it happened. It feels like 'closure'.”
Sian Thomas, Regional Fundraiser at the Stroke Association, said: “A Resolution Run is exactly that – a resolution for the New Year that counts. It's the ideal event for people in Greater Manchester who want to do something fun together, while getting more active in 2019.
“In the UK there are around 100,000 strokes every year. Our latest research (i) shows that by training and taking part in a Resolution Run, you are helping to lower your stroke risk. The funds raised by each runner means we can reach out to more stroke survivors and their families to offer the support that they may need to rebuild their lives. On behalf of the thousands of stroke survivors and their loved ones that we support every year, I just want to say thank you.”
Research from the charity shows that many strokes could be prevented if people made some simple lifestyle changes. Introducing physical activity into your routine is just one aspect of a healthier lifestyle required to reduce your risk of stroke. Monitoring (and managing) your blood pressure, eating a more balanced diet and stopping smoking can all significantly reduce your stroke risk. The money raised through the Resolution Run in Heaton Park will help the Stroke Association to fund vital research and support people affected by stroke in the North West.
Last year participants raised over £633,000 for the Stroke Association This year the charity hopes to raise over £850,000 to continue supporting stroke survivors and their families throughout the UK.
Entry fee is just £16. All runners receive a technical running t-shirt and medal. For more information about entering or volunteering at the Resolution Run, visit www.resolutionrun.org.ukemail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0300 330 0740.
For more information, please contact: Vicki Hall, PR Officer on 0161 742 7478 or email email@example.com