As part of our GYSC Champions, we’re on the lookout for extraordinary people who are really pushing the boundaries when it comes to hitting the BWP stairwell. You’ve already heard about Dan McIntyre, a two-time cancer survivor who now uses a wheelchair to get around, now comes John Turner!
John and his wife Vicki had been trying for a baby for the past two years, and unfortunately weren’t successful on a number of occasions. Following various visits to their local hospital, they were told that treatment was available to them, but the catch was that before they could take advantage of it they both had to lose weight. As a personal trainer myself I know from professional experience that this is no easy process.
Vicki got the ball rolling by joining the gym, taking steps to improve her nutrition, and regularly took part in group exercise classes. John however was moving in the opposite direction, loving his take away food and too many beers. He needed to get some focus and fast!
Last January, Run for All events held a competition on their facebook page where there was a chance to win free entry into four of their events, as well as free personal training sessions with a local personal trainer. As well as this, the winners progress would be followed by the Yorkshire Post through regular articles, all John had to do was tell them why he wanted to lose weight.
He won the competition, and started to take advantage of the free sessions. The initial health assessment was a massive eye opener for John, having raised concerns about blood pressure and overall health. The excessive take away foods and beers had clearly left a heavy toll on his body, and were quickly advised to ditch these out of his nutrition. To this day, John hasn’t had a single take away, and his alcohol intake has been infrequent, he was clearly inspired!
His first ever event was the Sport Relief Mile in March this year. The sense of achievement that he felt following the event was massive for him, and the satisfaction was made that bit sweeter considering as little as a month earlier he wasn’t able to run at all.
John didn’t just want to complete the event, he wanted to show the world what he’d lost from the competition, and had a ridiculous idea to show it. He decided that to truly push himself, he’d carry all the weight that he’d lost in the process on the events, crazy I know!
The events that John has completed so far are:
- Sport Relief mile
- Peak District 5-mile walk (with a 10kg weight vest and two medicine balls in his rucksack!)
- Carnegie 5k cross country race
- Leeds 10k
- York 10k (sub 1 hour 10k, goal completed!)
- Yorkshire Dales 14 mile walk
- Lake District 18 mile walk
John’s life has had a complete turn around; to have come so far in such a small amount of time is a true testament to the kind of character he is. He has a new lease of life, feeling the benefits of exercise and has been distilled with more energy than he has ever had before; he’s even converted the spare room of his house into a gym!
The running season is coming to an end pretty soon, and he plans to finish off the season with the Harewood 5 mile cross country race and the Leeds Abbey Dash in November. Once this is done, he’s got one week to transition his legs for the Great Yorkshire Stairclimb!
His total weight loss since the beginning of this epic journey is a whopping 5 stone 3lb, going from 21 stone 4lb to 16 stone 1lb. John has signed up for the Great Yorkshire Stairclimb already, and plans to run it carrying a 32kg weight vest, the exact weight that he’s lost since February. I for one can’t wait to see this man hit the stairs; it’s going to be a sight to see I’m sure, what an animal!
You can sponsor John here, get behind this athlete and watch his make even more progress.