Mum's lung condition inspires Heidi

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By West Briton | Thursday, November 08, 2012, 07:15

A WOMAN who only took up running 18 months ago has set her sights on the London Marathon.

Heidi Haden of Truro will be raising funds for the British Lung Foundation.

She was inspired by her mum, Susan, who was diagnosed in 2008 with a genetic lung condition called Alpha 1 antitrypsin deficiency after getting pneumonia.

Having never smoked and led a healthy lifestyle previously, the condition resulted in her having to take early retirement.

"My mum is the main reason and motivation behind me running and raising money," said Heidi, who is an assistant registrar at University College Falmouth.

"She had done a lot of good for others over the years, which has inspired me to do this as a way of saying thank you."

"Running does not come easily and although I am enthusiastic and have a good base level of fitness, I am not a natural runner," she said. Having competed in gymnastics until she was 15, she has tried a range of exercise and likes to "try new things to keep my life varied". She has already done a 5km Race for Life last year and a 10km race in London in July in aid of Alpha 1 Awareness UK.

With the help of a personal trainer, Heidi is training hard and runs with a local running club; she is also supported by husband Mark, who cycles with her on longer routes.

"I face the usual challenges of everyday life, fighting of a recent sinus infection, balancing my full-time work commitments and learning to drive, so some weeks I have been managing three runs a week and others less."

She has created an online blog so people can follow her progress and gain an insight into what's involved for an ordinary, non-professional athlete and working person, to prepare for such a challenge.

"Hopefully it will inspire people to have a go at doing physical exercise and see what physical and emotional benefits it can bring," she added.

To follow her progress visit or to donate visit

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  • Profile image for Alpha1UK

    For more information on how the genetically acquired Alpha 1 Antitrypsin Deficiency affects adults (through COPD in the lungs and liver disease) and children (through problems in the liver), please visit the Alpha 1 Awareness UK registered charity website -

    Donations are always welcome but first and foremost we provide support through forums and Facebook groups.

    By Alpha1UK at 19:16 on 09/11/12

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