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‘When I was 13, I was told that I would have a short life: I never dreamed I would live to see my grandson — now I am running around after him’

Caroline Heffernan (50) was told she would have a significantly shorter lifespan when she was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis as a teenager. She talks about how turning to exercise has changed her life for the better, and that, despite contracting Covid last year, she hopes to complete her second Ironman this August

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Caroline Heffernan with her 18-month-old grandson Milo

Caroline Heffernan with her 18-month-old grandson Milo

Caroline Heffernan with her 18-month-old grandson Milo

At a time when there is so little to be done beyond the confines of our houses, exercise would seem like an obvious outlet. And throughout 2020, many people across the country found this to be the case. Some of these have been highlighted as part of a new Sport Ireland campaign, Be Moved, encouraging the public to turn to movement and exercise as vital parts of our daily life.

One of the campaign’s ambassadors is Caroline Heffernan, a 50-year-old mother and grandmother who was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis (CF) — a disease that causes persistent lung infections and limits the ability to breathe — aged 13, and told she would have a significantly shortened lifespan.


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