Hard work paying off for Heart Racer

Blair Thorpe is the first to admit that he has a long way to go, but spending more than five hours a week at the gym and training for the Star City 2 Surf is already paying dividends.

Blair, from Christchurch, started the year weighing just over 200kg but has shed 11kg so far and is raising money for the Heart Foundation at the same time.

“I've found something that works for me and I'm really enjoying being active. I’m working hard for my first goal of completing the Star City 2 Surf.”

Blair, who is 32 and works as a Coffee Machine Technician, says he’s decided 2015 is the year to get healthy and stay healthy.

“I actually started about five years ago when I got diagnosed with sleep apnoea. I had a personal trainer and was going to the gym but found it financially draining and very hard to stay motivated after the Christchurch Earthquakes so gave up,” he explains.

This year, he got sick of “feeling lazy” and was starting to have trouble with his knees and ankles. He says City Fitness offering $7/week memberships made it an easy choice to get back to the gym.

“My training is great. I've lost 11kg to date and have heaps more energy. I get up at 5:30 each weekday morning and do around an hour at the gym before work. I'm really enjoying it and although it’s hard work it doesn’t seem like a chore and it’s a great routine.”

Blair has signed up as a Heart Racer for The Star City 2 Surf, which takes place on March 22 and is the largest fun run in the South Island.

Heart Racers raise funds for the Heart Foundation while participating in events like the Auckland Marathon or City 2 Surf. They come from all walks of life and all share a common goal - to stop New Zealanders dying prematurely from heart disease.

This is not the first time Blair has been a Heart Racer; he did the City 2 Surf 6km walk a few years ago.

“This year I want to push myself and do the full walk. I have a lot of friends, family, workmates and customers who have been supportive of what I’m doing. I just need more of them to donate!”

Like many Kiwis, Blair doesn’t have to look far to see the heavy toll of heart disease.

“My dad's father died of a heart attack before I was born. My father-in-law had a heart attack two years ago but luckily survived. And last year a close family friend died of a major heart attack only a week or so after the birth of his first grand-daughter.”

Blair, who lives in Bromley with his wife Vanessa, has set a fundraising target of $1000 and needs your help to achieve that goal.

“Please help me in supporting the NZ Heart Foundation in the great work they do by sponsoring me as a Heart Racer. All the funds go direct to them and it's great encouragement seeing the funds I'm helping to raise.”