Southsea teenager runs virtual half-marathon for 'amazing' eating disorder charity

A TEENAGER with an eating disorder decided to run a virtual half-marathon at the last minute to raise funds for an ‘amazing’ charity that has helped her.

Thursday, 18th February 2021, 11:00 am

Freya Goodwin, 19, battled with bulimia and orthorexia – an obsession over healthy eating – over the past couple of years before turning to Beat Eating Disorders UK.

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Since then, the Southsea woman has seen her mental health boosted. ‘I struggled for a couple of years before realising you can get help through this charity,’ she said.

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Freya Goodwin from Southsea, who has been fundraising for Beat Eating Disorders UK

‘They help with eating disorders but also mental health. They really helped me and do so much for everyone.

‘The charity provides a helpline to those struggling but also advice and support for friends and family around someone recovering. Not only that, but they campaign to increase knowledge about mental health and eating disorders to let people know they are not alone.

‘Having experienced my own struggles with bulimia and orthorexia over the past couple of years, I wouldn’t have begun my recovery journey without charities like this eliminating the stigma around eating disorders and encouraging everyone to get help in one way or another.’

The charity offers talks with counsellors, online links and support for those needing help, and lots of information about eating disorders and mental health.

With Freya turning to regularly jogging as a way of helping her mental health during lockdown, she decided it made sense to run the Virtual Portsmouth Coastal Half Marathon 2021 and fundraise for the charity at the same time.

And despite the half-marathon not ending until February 28, Freya completed it on February 8 having only started it at short notice a week earlier.

‘Running helps distract me and get me to a healthy place,’ she said. ‘I didn’t plan to do the marathon but was running anyway – and do about 30km a week – so thought I would do it and see how much I could raise.

‘I only put down a target of £100 but have already raised over £450. It was a complete surprise that so many people would donate. It’s very nice of them.

‘It’s good to make a donation to this amazing charity.’

She now hopes to raise £1,000.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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