Following a weight loss plan and giving birth to a lovely baby boy, Natalie Newnes started running marathons. Life could not have been better for Natalie until pains in her side revealed she had kidney cancer. This is Natalie’s story:
“In January 2012, I joined Slimming World as I needed to lose weight so I could have fertility treatment as my husband Shaun and I were struggling to conceive. Ironically, after a year I lost 4 stone and fell pregnant naturally and In 2014 I gave birth to a gorgeous baby boy we named Oscar.
I made it my mission to become a healthier and fitter mam for Oscar and in January 2016 I decided to follow in my husband’s footsteps and take up running. Before long I was signing up for my first half marathon!
As the months past and the half-marathon drew closer, I started to suffer with pains in my right side. These felt similar to a stitch and I thought it was associated to running so I put it to the back of my mind and continued training hard. The day of my race I suffered really bad pains but again I brushed them off. As they continued after the run I eventually went to the doctors who referred me for a ultrasound scan. Within a few hours of the scan my doctor called to say they found a 5cm lump and needed to do a CT scan to investigate further. I had the scan and after having an inconclusive biopsy, the doctors made the decision to remove my right kidney as they said it was very likely it was high grade cancer.
So, in April 2017 the whole kidney was removed by keyhole surgery (a laparoscopic nephrectomy). Thankfully it was low grade cancer and no further treatment was needed. After having the all clear to run again, I decided to enter the Great North Run ballot and was surprised when I actually secured a place! I trained hard but healing from my surgery slowed things down. I received another blow three-weeks before my race I was told I have stage 3 chronic kidney disease in my remaining kidney. I knew after everything that I had been through, this news wasn’t going to stop me or keep me from doing what I’ve always dreamed of doing. So, on 9th September 2018 I completed the Great North Run in a great time of 3 hours 20 minutes! It was such an emotional day, an amazing experience and I am finally proud of myself for completing it after what I’ve gone through and happy to say, I’m also 13 stone lighter.
I have had amazing support from family, friends and work colleagues who have all sponsored me, raising a fantastic amount of money for Kidney Cancer UK, an amazing charity. £610 raised.”