Risin’ up, back on the street…
Teaching assistant Emma Walton is going to be stepping into the boxing ring later this year to raise money for Cancer Research UK. Emma, 43, who works at Pirehill First School has started a gruelling eight-week training programme to make sure she’s ready for her official boxing match in June.
Over to Emma…“I had steadily been putting on weight for some months and decided a couple of months ago to change my very poor eating habits. I embarked on the Sirtfood diet, which I didn’t strictly adhere to, and therefore didn’t get very far as I didn’t cut out some of the things I should have and wasn’t as strict on myself as I should have been. I was also feeling bored and lethargic with not much energy or enthusiasm to do much in the evenings other than fall asleep in front of the TV most nights. Work keeps me very busy as a full-time teaching assistant at Pirehill First School but, after work had finished at night, so had I really.
“One night about six weeks ago, I saw an advert on Facebook for Ultra White Collar Boxing (UWCB) which were holding an event in Stafford in June this year. I used to very much enjoy the sport of kick boxing although this was getting on for 20 years ago and the article caught my eye. I read more into it and the deal is basically that you get eight weeks of free, intensive training which culminates in participating in a fight at the end of the eight weeks. The aim is to raise money for Cancer Research UK and UWCB are hoping to raise £5 million pounds for the charity.
“So I nervously accepted the invitation to participate and attended the launch meeting along with around 30 other people, most of whom were much younger and taller than me!
“Training started almost two weeks ago and I can honestly say it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done. Our trainer Chris is a middleweight champion and certainly puts us through our paces. The session starts with a run of a mile or so which I am failing miserably at completing so far but I am determined to crack it soon! We are having team sprint races which are followed by learning boxing stances, moves etc., there are so many things you need to remember all the time which is really difficult.
“Training finishes with a half hour circuit session which is an absolute killer. My whole body is total jelly when we finish and I just about manage the drive home from Stafford! Every day I wake up hurting and am constantly hungry. My diet has continued, in the main, to be very healthy and I have cut out alcohol completely which has amazed both me and my friends as very fond of a nice red wine or three!!
“Despite the intensity of training and the pain it causes I am actually really loving it and feeling so much better physically and mentally. Another six weeks of training to be completed before the fight on 12th June at Couture nightclub in Stafford. We only find out who our opponent is going to be a couple of days before the fight after an official weigh in so that you can be matched as closely as possible.
“I am hoping to raise over £500 for this very worthy cause, so far I have received £110 on my JustGiving page. I have to sell at least 20 tickets for the fight night at £20 each which I am trying to do at the moment. My daughter is helping me to raise funds with a raffle for her friends and I am hoping for prize donations from some of our local businesses in Stone, the lovely Sharon from Chantilly has already donated some fab prizes.
“Please help me to complete this challenge, it is totally out of my comfort zone and not something I expected to do at my age!”