Fleur’s countdown to Big Swim continues

Sunday 25th June 2017 9:30 am
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Fleur Hawthorne, a mother of three from Ruardean, who works at Brockhampton Residential Home, near Ross-on-Wye is fine-tuning her fitness regime as she is about to embark on the biggest challenge of her life.

This September, Fleur plans to swim the Channel to raise money for It’s In The Bag Cancer Charity and the Great Western Air Ambulance Charity. Both charities are close to Fleur’s heart.

Physical challenges are not new to Fleur, who rather than allow her 40th birthday (2013) to pass without notice, decided to complete a triathlon. Since then Fleur has lost a lot of weight and taken part in a several endurance events.

Fleur’s most recent training day was spent in Babbcombe, taking part in a cold water swim. She is currently trying to build up the amount of time she can spend in the water and trains at Lydney outdoor pool as well as in The Lake at Clevedon. She also swims regularly at Ross Swimming Pool, she told the Gazette that the team at Halo had been very supportive of her attempt to swim the Channel and have given her free membership.

Fleur said “I love to push my body to the extreme and get an immense buzz when I achieve something that, in reality I should have failed at. When I was nearly 40 I had a wake-up call, I felt unfit and overweight (I have since lost five stone through my determination to succeed) to give myself a better chance in life. I have always wanted my kids to be as proud of me as I am of them – I want them to refer to me as ‘the crazy bird who is our mum’.”

She told the Gazette that her family have been very supportive as she has not really had time for anything else except swimming and fitness training. She has one son and two daughters, a son-in-law and grandson, and they sometimes go swimming or runing with her – ‘it is a big family effort,’ she added.

The residents at Brockhampton Court have also got behind Fleur and will be willing her on when she starts the Big Swim. Fleur has been given a window in which to attempt the swim between September 13th and 18th, but expects to start around September 15th.

The shortest distance involved in the attempt is 21 miles and the fastest swim is a little over seven hours and the slowest nearly 27 hours. During the crossing Fleur will be escorted by a pilot boat, the Sea Leopard.

To support Fleur visit fleursbigswim.co.uk/donate-now.html or tickets are available for a special fundraising Fish Supper at Orles Barn, Ross-on-Wye on July 7th.

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