Jess is ready and raring to run

KEEP ON RUNNING: Jessica Smith, from Great Cornard, in training.
KEEP ON RUNNING: Jessica Smith, from Great Cornard, in training.

It is the time of year for resolutions, whether it be losing weight, quitting smoking or learning a language.

For many, the aims and ambitions for the next 12 months are all too quickly forgotten, but Jessica Smith, from Maldon Court in Great Cornard, is determined to stick to her promise.

The 22-year-old has set herself the task of running 100km in a series of races throughout 2014.

She will be completing 5km park runs, mucky races and obstacle courses – all in aid of the Cystic Fibrosis Trust.

Jessica’s challenge has been inspired by the ordeal faced by her friend Daren Butler, who has been battling the disease.

“Daren had a really bad year last year,” she said. “Out of 52 weeks, he spent 38 in Papworth Hospital. He is only 22 and wants to live a normal life.

“What he goes through on a daily basis with all the medication he takes to be able to live is crazy.”

Jessica is married to Sudbury community warden Bradley Smith, with whom she has a three-year-old son, Logan.

Her challenge is even more remarkable given that she weighed 17st 8lb this time last year.

“I lost three stone going to Slimming World classes in Sudbury,” she said.

“Georgeena, who runs the club, is Daren’s mum and she has helped my journey, so I want to help her.”

Jessica, who says her target weight is just under 11st, already has some indication of the task awaiting her, having finished a mucky races event last year.

“It was absolutely exhausting,” she said. “I go to bootcamp and my instructor was running it with me, but it was a real struggle.

“I know that I will have to go through that again, but I will just go in for them as and when they come up and I will do them.”

Jessica completed her first 5km park run of the year at Nowton Park on Saturday. To sponsor her, go to www.justgiving.com/Jessica-Smith17.