Finish line in sight for West Moonah runner

WEIGHING in at 126-kilgrams, Adam French knew he needed a change.

“It all happened around five or six-years-ago,” he said.

“I’d stopped playing cricket, my wife Casey and I had just had our first child and my mother was diagnosed with cancer – it just all started adding up and I began packing on the weight.

“But I soon realised it was about time to start looking after myself, so I cleaned up my diet and signed up to compete in my very first half marathon.

“I also formed a weight loss support text message group about 18-months-ago that went a long way to keeping me motivated and accountable.”

Fast-forward several years and the West Moonah local weighs in at a healthy 96-kilgorams and has tackled a total of five half marathons.

With his focus shifted from weight loss to the joys of competitive running, Mr French now plans to take on the Medibank Melbourne Marathon.

Acting as one of Australia’s largest marathons, the Medibank Melbourne Marathon attracts more than 30,000 participants seeking to challenge themselves and conquer their goals.

Drawing people from across the globe, the festival allows participants to run past some of Melbourne’s most iconic landmarks including Flinders Street Station, the Botanic Gardens and Albert Park Lake, before finishing with a lap on the hallowed turf of Victoria’s famous MCG.

The event, which will be held on 15 October, offers the option of five distances for runners of all ages and fitness levels, with Mr French planning the run the main 42.195-kilometre marathon.

As his first full marathon, Mr French has been training hard for the past several months, running up to six-hours every week.

“I have a few friends from the message group who will be participating in the marathon with me, so they have been a big help in keeping me motivated to train, especially on those cold and rainy days,” he said.

“I’m very much looking forward to the marathon and from what I can tell, I’m currently on track to be able to complete it.

“My goal is to break four-hours, which I think is pretty reasonable for a 40-year-old guy.

“My wife has been so supportive throughout this whole process and is planning to be there in Melbourne with the kids to greet me as I cross the finish line – I wouldn’t have been able to do this without her.”

When asked what advice he would give to other people wishing to begin their weight loss journey, Mr French said the key was to find other like-minded people to keep you motivated.

“Also, the concept of maintaining the perfect diet is sometimes impossible,” he said.

“So, if you do have the occasional slip up, it important to just give yourself a break, forgive the mistake and get right back into it.”

For more information on the Medibank Melbourne Marathon, visit www.melbournemarathon.com.au.

Caption: From left, Craig Ribbon, Adam French and Michael Pearce cross the finish line at the Run Melbourne Half Marathon in July.