DOZENS turned out for Slimming World’s take on the Race for Life and walked, ran, or sprinted their way around Coate Water for charity.
The weight-loss organisation, which focuses on encouraging healthy eating without weighing and measuring, this year decided to support their charity partner Cancer Research UK by encouraging members and their friends and relatives to take part in a 1km, 3km or 5km run to raise funds for the cause.
On Saturday, about 100 people turned out to take part in the scenic route around the lake.
One brave runner and a consultant with Slimming World, Chris Bunce, took the challenge even further, running eight-and-a-half laps to run a half marathon in around two hours.
Pete Day, Slimming World team developer for East Swindon, said: “Every year at Slimming World we do a run like the Race for Life to raise money for our charity,SMILES.
“This year, they’ve partnered with Cancer Research UK, which is why we’ve called it Slimming World does Race for Life.
“It means that men and women can take part.
“Cancer is also something that affects so many people I think it can be very personal to them.
“It is something that’s a cause close to my heart because my father-in-law died of cancer in July last year, so it was good to be able to take part and raise awareness of the disease.”
In total the day raised more than £1,000 for Cancer Research, with many Slimming World members taking part as part of the exercise element of the programme.
Heather Zych, Slimming World team developer for West Swindon, said: “At Slimming World we have an exercise element called Body Magic.
“Some people in the group have gone on to become runners and join running clubs and start training for half marathons and everything else. They then come to group and talk about it and it really encourages everyone else to give it a go as well.”
Michelle Hutchings, from Walcot, was one of the Slimming World members who took part in the event.
The 49-year-old said: “My step-father died three years ago from cancer so it’s still pretty recent and when I heard about it, it was something I wanted to do to raise money to support the charity.
“I’ve raised around £50 for Cancer Research in sponsorship money.
“It’s great to be able to do something like this which can be part of Body Magic and also raise money for a good cause.”
Following the challenge, participants celebrated with a picnic beside the lake. To find out more about Slimming World and find a group near you, visit www.slimmingworld.com.