Newry man Alastair chases dream with 4 month physical training programme

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editor@newrytimes.com
Friday, November 1st, 2019
Community, Sport

An ‘Everyday Battler’ from Newry has overcome his physical and mental obstacles to chase a life-changing goal with Bridgestone UK, beginning with a four-month physical training programme and ending with a first-ever 10km run.

Alastair Chambers, aged 39, was one of just nine people across the UK to participate in Bridgestone’s Everyday Battlers campaign, where he embarked on a four-month journey to get into shape for a 10km run, which he completed recently.

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Alastair has been suffering with stress-induced psoriasis since the death of his mum in 2006 and wants to fight back against his condition and raise awareness for others who have to live with it too.

 

 

His story touched the hearts of a Bridgestone judging panel, who immediately contacted him to take part.

Bridgestone enlisted the help of Olympic Games Rio 2016 gold medallist Chris Mears and performance psychologist, Professor Greg Whyte for the challenge, both of whom provided both mental and physical support during Alastair’s journey.

After completing the 10k run, he told Newry Times, “When the journey started, I wouldn’t have dreamt I would have been able to do this.

 

 

“I’m now a lot fitter, healthier and feel so much better about myself. My psoriasis is now 95% clear, and that is due in part to the Everyday Battlers campaign and being fitter and healthier.

“I hope to inspire other people with psoriasis and encourage them to be less self-conscious about the condition and to talk about it.

“It is a condition that you are aware of every day and it affects your confidence. People shouldn’t be ashamed of it at all. There are solutions out there, which I hope I have been able to demonstrate,” he added.

 

 

Synchronised springboard diving champion Chris created the unique task for a group of people to conquer, calling on all his experience of having to fight to realise his own dreams against all odds, when he almost died from a ruptured spleen as a 16-year-old.

 

Fittingly, he was on hand to guide participants through every step of the four-month challenge, which was created to inspire people to reach their own goals, no matter their backgrounds or personal circumstances. It all concluded with the 10k run at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

 

 

A total of nine ‘Everyday Battlers’ were selected by a judging panel to participate, all of whom have an emotional story that inspired them to take up the task in the first place.

The group embodies the spirit of Bridgestone’s Chase Your Dream, No Matter What campaign to complete the challenge, gaining a life skill that will empower them to chase their own dreams.

In 2009, Chris Mears suffered a ruptured spleen and was given a five percent chance of survival by doctors. He was told it was likely that he would never dive again.

However, with a fighting spirit and surrounded by a team of medical professionals, fitness trainers and psychologists, he overcame the odds to return to the diving board.

 

 

Chris said, “I don’t think the participants quite understand how much they have inspired me. They’ve done something remarkable and are a great source of inspiration to me and everyone at Bridgestone.

“Completing a 10km run is a huge prospect for some people who might never dream of participating for a number of reasons, let alone complete the race.

He added, “We were touched by Alastair’s personal story which underpinned his place as an Everyday Battler and it was a very emotional moment to see him cross the finish line.”

To watch Alastair and Bridgestone’s Everyday Battlers’ journey to 10k, visit https://youtu.be/4ytTe5RMzaY

 

 

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