The Shine charity event for cancer patients took place at Battersea Power Station on the 28th September 8pm through to the 29th. The 26 mile walk was based around Central London and had facilities every 4 miles to receive refreshments such as water, bananas and energy snacks. The event was noticed for really looking after their cancer supporters by having refreshments, porter toilets and sit down stops.

Karen Smith (age 46) a mother of three from Shirley, attended ‘The Shine’ event, completing the walk with her twin sister Debbie Hynes, and friend Debbie Clark. Karen felt encouraged to raise awareness of cancer after her twin had suffered from lung cancer. And so, she raised £498, with only £14 in cash and the rest through Facebook sponsors.

Karen and Debbie.C completed the walk in 9 hours, letting Debbie.H walk ahead; finishing in 7 hours. They showed their determination to complete the walk fighting their bodies request to stop, just like a cancer patient would. As Karen stated “Debbie hit ‘the wall’ at 13 miles and we both threw up out of shock to the body”. And yet, they both continued to walk the remaining 13 miles; to show their appreciation of their livelihood and receive a medal for supporting the charity. She also emphasised on the pain in her joints and back once completing the walk; ‘I was bent over double after the walk- I couldn’t move’.

Karen said she had trained for 11 weeks in advance, and received an 8 week programme by the event with a fitness routine to rest for a day, do pilates on another, walk for 3-5 hours at a steady pace etc. In her training up until the event she had lost a total of 3 stone 3lbs and has continued her fitness losing an astonishing 3 stone 13lbs.

At the finish line there were silver sleeping bags for those waiting on others involved in the walk; which her sister was resting on. After the completion of the walk Karen said “During the race everything was very exciting and emotional as there were children with oxygen tanks and people with shaved heads; I was inspired by the atmosphere. Afterwards I felt proud- I cried the minute I stepped over the finish line and received a medal.”

Karen said that she has applied to do the walk again next year, and stated “I’d like to better my time and it’s an achievable way of making money for charity.”