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My best foot forward for Beaumont

MY name is Siobhain Whyte. I am from Kilmacanogue in Co Wicklow and am currently working as an audit trainee in Ernst and Young, Dublin. This time last year, I found out I had a tumour growing around my spinal cord in my neck which had started affecting my motor system (essentially it was paralysing my left side and had started to affect my right leg).

I was transferred to Beaumont Hospital, the neuro-surgical centre of Ireland, to have the cyst removed. As the cyst had been affecting my left leg the longest, after my surgery I had to learn how to use it again from pointing my toes to walking.

Two months ago, when I felt like I was healthy and fit enough to start training for the Flora Women's Mini Marathon, Beaumont Hospital Foundation was the first charity that came to mind.

I owe the staff at Beaumont a lot and if I can raise some money for the foundation to help their continuous patient care improvements, it's the least I can do.

Having been a patient there myself, I think that the hospital does fantastic work. The staff are very dedicated and, as a patient, I felt like I got great treatment.

I have actually done the Flora Women's Mini Marathon twice now, in 2009 and 2010. I think it is a great event. It gives you something to train for every year and I always take advantage of it, especially after the Christmas splurge.

I also love to see myself improving year on year. I will be doing my very best to beat my 2010 time, which will be difficult as I am not as fit this year, but I will give it a good go.

I will be running it this year. Running is something I have gotten into over the past two years as a great way to relieve stress, relax and keep fit. Training has been going well.

I am not in a club, I simply run around my area.

I use a smartphone app to track my runs, the time I spend running and the distance I run, which helps me slowly increase the distance I am running and my time.

My sister will be doing the Flora Women's Mini Marathon with me this year. I am actually in the runners' section and she is in the walkers' section, so she is giving me a head start but at the end of the day it's a race so I am hoping sibling rivalry will keep me ahead!

>In conversation with Brenda McCormick

If you would like to do the Flora Women's Mini Marathon for Beaumont Hospital, tel (01) 809 2161 or email friends@bhf.ie. www.bhf.ie


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