By Gill Stewart at
Need some motivation to get started on an exercise regime? Read these stories and you will be inspired to make 2020 the year you get more active – the rewards are MASSIVE as you will see
Milton Keynes Nordic Walker (and now Walk leader!) Ursula says
“I am so happy that I discovered Nordic Walking.”
“I had to stop running, after many years, due to Osteoarthritis in my hip. Waiting for a diagnosis took a long time and I could feel myself getting very low. Once I knew I couldn’t run anymore, I looked to see what activities there were in my local area of Milton Keynes… I signed on to the ‘Learn To Nordic Walk’ course and joined Milton Keynes Nordic Walking. That was October 2018 and I have not looked back since. I am feeling so much better physically and happier in myself. I have no more neck, hip and back pain and I have met wonderful like minded people and made new friends who enjoy exploring our beautiful Milton Keynes area. As part of MK Nordic Walking we have Nordic Walked the 10 Mile ‘Midnight Moo’ to support Willen Hospice and had GREAT fun at ‘Purbeck’ our Nordic Walking festival in Dorset.
Nordic Walking is in my opinion a wonderful remedy for body, mind and soul. “
“My name is Stephanie Kelly and I am 49 years old. Back in October 2016 I was diagnosed with stage 3 triple negative breast cancer which had spread to my nymph nodes. Much to say my world fell apart but I was determined I had too much to do and see, so the battle began to kick cancer to the kerb. The following year was taken up with operations, intense rounds of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, but I made it. By the end of 2017 I was determined to get back on with living life to the max. Unfortunately, my body had other ideas. January and February had to be on par with when I was having the treatment if not worse at times. The treatment had taken its toll on my joints my immune system was weak, and I was picking every bug up that was flying around safe to say I hit rock bottom. I had beaten this cruel disease, but it had left its toll on my mind and body. I was determined to get my health back on track. This is where I came across an article on Nordic walking from a cancer support group. So, I found a local group and my new adventure began. March 2018, I joined Helen Richardson’s ‘Learn To’ Nordic walk course. I did the 4-week course, got my freedom passport and the rest is history. I rarely have any joint pain my immune system is tip top; my fitness has improved 10-fold. I’m losing weight and toning up. But mostly my depression started to lift I try to do at least 3 walks a week but would walk every day If I could.
The social side is amazing, having the opportunity to talk to fellow Nordic walkers from all different backgrounds which I would never have met with such interesting stories and a wealth of knowledge. Just being out walking in a group is so good for your wellbeing emotionally and physically. I would and do recommend Nordic walking to everyone I meet. I’ve already done a 10-mile walk. We’ve just come back from our 2nd walking festival in Purbeck and can’t wait to go back again next year. I’m looking forward to doing some challenges and I’m determined to walk the whole of the Pembrokeshire coastline next May. This I can definitely say is all down to my amazing instructor Helen and my Nordic walking family Love life and Nordic walk” Thank you Steph.
Sally Gardener told us “I bought some trekking poles to help with Arthritis in my ankles and knees which kept giving way. Having searched how to use them properly I found Lou a local Instructor, on the NWUK website. I was so much slower than that particular group but they were all lovely and although too fast for me at that stage, they did inspire me to get fitter. After another bout of knee issues I joined the wellness walks because my consultant said exercise might work to remove ‘loose bodies’ in the joint. These gentle mobilising sessions certainly did the trick and gave me confidence too. I gained the courage to join the weigh in walks where you are pushed a bit harder and am delighted to have now dropped 3 stone. My knee pain has gone and these days, whilst I don’t need poles to aid me any more, I just would not walk without them. On holiday recently, I managed a huge descent in Yosemite and my Rheumatologist is delighted with my progress – in fact he feels I no longer need an operation.
I must also add that the sessions with my local group (WALX Dorset) have also led to me gaining a lot of like minded friends so we socialise as well as support each other to get fitter. My goal is to be fitter at 60 then I was at 50 as I am inspired by some of the group (including those original speedy Ladies) who are all amazing despite being over 10 years my senior!”
Sue Pratt from West Sussex told us “Following a stroke I decided I needed some exercise in my life to help me lose weight and regain my balance and self confidence.
This group was to me a life saver, I am healthier than I have been for many years. I’ve lost a lot of weight and have found an unexpected love of exercise.
This group has a great social side as well as fantastic support for any challenge you may want to set for yourself or have a goal set with help from Denise and her team.
We live in such a beautiful part of the country the walks are varying in length and challenge but always scenic and fun.
I would encourage anyone to give this a go, compared to joining a gym it is real value for money you will be supported every step of your journey whether that be from a low starting point or to further improve and challenge yourself”
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