HBF Run for a Reason

Reporter: Graeme Butler

For Stephanie Barron, life has been a struggle, when we first met Steph, the single Mum was overweight, unhappy, and in a very dark place. What a difference a month makes..."I'm feeling really really good. I'm just feeling so much healthier happier and just have so much more energy." and the big bonus ... she's lost 8 kilos. By simply eating smaller portions and cooking healthier meals. "My work pants now falling off me a little bit I have to now pin them now on the side." She's also stuck to a simple exercise plan. "Walking swimming and boxing - love boxing - always wanted to do it, love it"

HBF fitness trainer Max Tamatoa couldn't be happier with his star student. "I only see her an hour a week so a lot of the efforts she's putting in on her own back and its fantastic she's getting awesome results and I'm really happy for her." Stephanie's GP, Dr Alida Lancee is amazed too. Dr Lancee credits Stephanie's will-power for turning her life around. "You think that you're going to get well from a pill in a bottle, you might cure some diseases and medicines very good for that but a feeling of wellness and energy and enthusiasm for life you need to make for yourself."

The key is sticking to positive change for the long haul and Stephanie isn't the only one on this personal journey. Clint Heal and Barry Lefort - are also running for a reason. Last year, Barry had two heart attacks that almost killed him. Now he's fitter than he's been in years.

"I'm sure that when i was lying in hospital last year and someone mentioned 4km walk i would have said sorry no way not me. Talk to someone else." An hour or two twice a week in the gym - is part of his rehabilitation, "It's pretty full on - you're getting everything going, you're getting your heart rate going, you're not damaging your heart - it's repairing." Craig Cheetham is the clinical director of the cardiovascular prevention and rehab centre at Hollywood Hospital, "typically here it's taken a heart attack to have people feeling the best they have for 10 to 15 years" And the incentive to staying fit is overwhelming, "studies have shown there's a 25 to 30 percent reduction in cardiovascular deaths for people who participate at around 5 years."

Staying fit and healthy has been a life-long passion for Clint Heal - despite battling an aggressive cancer. "When I was diagnosed in 2005 if my doctor have had said you really shouldn't be doing any of this stuff - i wouldn't have won any football premierships i wouldn't have surfed some of the best waves of my life I'd still be living at home." and the 28 year old can't wait to run for his reason - a brand new baby girl. "Had the absolute pleasure of welcoming Abbie Grace into the world so yeah it's been an amazing experience."

Becoming a dad is some accomplishment for someone once told he had just a 10 percent chance of survival. "To see the birth and have her in my arms is just an amazing experience and probably one that I wasn't sure I would ever get to see when i was diagnosed over 6 years ago." Clint had 34 secondary skin cancer tumours cut from his body in four years. He's now been cancer free for 15 months. And wants other sufferers to know them too, have a reason to run. "One of the main reasons that i got involved was to hopefully show others who may be diagnosed with cancer who are doing okay physically that they can go out there and they can be physically active."

Three people - three very personal struggles... three of the very best reasons to run.

Steph says "I could only just do the 4k walk now I'm thinking no i can actually do the 14 k walk."

Barry says "I'm sure that when i was lying in hospital last year and someone mentioned a 4km walk i would have said sorry no way not me. Talk to someone else."

Clint says "When you get told you've got cancer all of a sudden it makes you think well maybe i can't do something like a 14 k run but hopefully I'll be able to show on the day that it can happen."

And it's still not too late for you to enter the HBF run for a reason on Sunday May 27 visit: www.hbfrun.com.au