Mum was told she would never walk again – now she’s tackling a half-marathon.
Five years ago Jayne Reeves was told she would never walk unaided again – now the 31-year-old from Sheldon, Birmingham is a fully qualified personal trainer, preparing for her first ever half marathon. She will running the Bupa Great Birmingham Run for Cancer Research in memory of three close relatives she has lost to cancer.
Jayne’s problems began while pregnant for the third time, when she suffered a displaced pelvis. Then, in 2008 while expecting her fifth child, Jayne had difficulty moving her legs, which doctors thought was a repeat of the pelvic condition. Scans revealed, however, that three discs in her lower back had slipped and were now damaged. She was confined to a wheelchair for five months and spent three months in Heartlands Hospital, where she was told that she would always have to take pain-relieving medication.
“It absolutely flattened me – they told me I’d never be off crutches,” said Jayne, whose condition saw her grow to a size 18. Refusing the offer of surgery (which had a 30% success rate), Jayne has since made a remarkable recovery and is now a svelte size 8.
Also taking part in the Run will be a team of Midland soldiers in full military kit – carrying energy-sapping 20kg backpacks. The 10-strong team from 22 Signal Regiment of the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME), based in Stafford, will be running to raise money for Help for Heroes.
“The team is made up of all ranks and ages, from 18-48,” said their leader, Warrant Officer First Class Bill Sykes. “We did Birmingham last year and really enjoyed it – the crowds were brilliant, it’s definitely our favourite half marathon and one of the best organised runs we do.
“It’s tough going – people think you’re mad, running in boots and combats and carrying 20kg on your back, the weight of a suitcase you’d take on holiday.”
Despite being weighed down by their kit, the soldiers clocked an impressive 2 hours 14 minutes in last year’s Run.
Other members of the team will run carrying buckets to collect money along the route. The team is hoping to raise around £5,000 for their nominated charity.
To sponsor them, go to www.bmycharity.com/22SRBirmHalfMarathon
Entries for the Bupa Great Birmingham Run are still open at www.greatrun.org/birmingham. The day also includes a mini and junior run.