AFTER being diagnosed with aggressive breast cancer a Leamington mum decided to lace-up her running shoes.
Mary-Jane Vaughan was diagnosed with breast cancer in October and vowed she would be able to run 5k by the time she finished chemotherapy.
And in February – a month before her chemotherapy was due to end – the 41 year-old completed the 5k Park Run at Leamington’s Newbold Comyn.
Her daughters, seven year-old Poppy and five year-old twins Harriet and Annabel, will join Mary-Jane and a 19 strong team at the Race for Life at Stoneleigh on June 26.
They are hoping to raise £2,000 for Cancer Research.
Mary-Jane told the Observer: “Now I’m at the end of my treatment I don’t feel like I’m just living day to day – when you have cancer you need to deal with the symptoms you’re feeling on that particular day.
“I’m starting to feel like a new me now.
“Lots of people blame themselves when they’re diagnosed – my instinctive reaction was ‘I should go vegan, I should be healthier.’ But it’s no one’s fault because cancer is a lottery.
“I will say that everyone should check themselves regularly, even men!”
To help her train during treatment, Mary-Jane enlisted the help of personal trainer, Kirk Allsopp from Kenilworth-based Unifit Training.
He is now encouraging Mary-Jane to take on the Fun Stratford Triathlon in October which involves a 200 metre swim, 18km cycle and 2.5km run.
She said: “Kirk has pushed me in training, but also knows some days I’m really not up to doing much.
“My husband Rob has been incredible throughout everything.
“He’s very proud of me for sticking to the training and said to me at one point ‘I knew you were strong, I just didn’t realise how strong you were’.”
Mary-Jane finished radiotherapy at the start of June and now hopes to return to college to become an interior designer.
Visit www.justgiving.com/teams/team-sf2016 to sponsor Mary-Jane.