Fundraiser Addi is taking on a spectacular year of challenges in aid of The Appeal, with her 7 year old daughter Athina by her side.
With an inspiring story behind her motivation, Addi will be taking on a series of events throughout 2016 to raise funds for The Appeal whilst aiming to raise awareness about the benefits of an active lifestyle.
Having already completed fell and trail races in Yorkshire and Snowdonia since January, Addi will be taking on the Leeds Half Marathon on 8th May hoping for a new PB. These events will be in preparation to complete her first full Ironman (in Tenby, Wales) in September of this year.
To make her catalogue of challenges even more special, the day before the Leeds Half Marathon Addi plans to swim 5km whilst pulling daughter Athina in a kayak.
Addi's fundraising journey sees Athina involved every step of the way. Addi says: "Whilst I'll be doing the physical work, Athina will be the enthusiastic voice keeping me going. Together, my daughter and I are TeamAA. As a mother and daughter unit, we challenge ourselves to keep our minds and our bodies healthy."
Much of Addi's motivation stems from her daughter. Addi explains "Nowadays, Athina is healthy, sporty and happy but she was born asthmatic and suffered from respiratory problems as a baby. Athina spent the beginning of her life in an incubator and it was in order to overcome these early health challenges that we committed ourselves to a healthy lifestyle."
Athina is also super-active, and will be supporting her mum's training. As well as being a keen swimmer, Athina is a regular runner and has completed 18 Park Runs of 5km in just over 2 years. Of her daughter's achievements Addi says "One of Athina's biggest achievements thus far has been running 1.5k 'solo' during the Ironkids race in Tenby. It was her first race, among hundreds of other children and even though she fell, she got up and ran to the finish line with a big smile on her face."
For their incredible challenges throughout 2016 Addi has set a target of reaching £7,000 on their Just Giving page www.justgiving.com/addiandathina
Addi's passion for promoting an active lifestyle for youngsters goes beyond her own activities, and has seen her establish The Mini Olympics Project.
Addi is giving up her own time to deliver a 'Mini Olympics' scheme in schools across Leeds and says "Our project has been carefully created around the Y3 curriculum and involves the study of the ancient Greeks. It links history, language and the arts with sports movement to engage with young learners of all backgrounds and abilities."
The project is free with donations to The Appeal encouraged. Addi describes its aims by saying "The Mini Olympics aims to plant a seed in children's minds and enthuse them about sports so that they can create their own adventures. By visiting the schools on my day off, I hope to create a world where more children can be introduced to the benefits of sport."
Of her decision to take on these challenges, Addi says "Despite being a working single mum with limited finances, I try to fit my training regime around my busy lifestyle. I can achieve this thanks to the amazing support that I receive from Athina and my friends. I cycle to work regardless of the weather and look for opportunities to train with my daughter…; without Athina by my side cheering me on, none of this would be possible."
To follow Addi and Athina's fundraising journey, visit their website www.ourgreatproject.wix.com/teamaa where you can keep up to date with Addi's blog.