Mandi's story

Get inspired

Mandi used to love working out at the gym and staying active, that was until her fibromyalgia, a long-term condition which causes pain all over the body, drastically changed how she was able to exercise. 

The last year has been particularly difficult. Mandi had to leave her job as a teacher (something she did for 22 years) due to the effects of fibromyalgia. Paired with menopause symptoms, it has been even more difficult to keep fit. 

It’s not just Mandi’s ability to exercise that has been affected by fibromyalgia, it’s her enjoyment of life. “I occasionally follow workouts on YouTube…but the extreme tiredness, lethargy and lack of motivation means I don’t do it as much as I used to…the only thing I can still do regularly, with the help of a Kindle, is read. The rest are dictated to by the pain from my fibromyalgia and osteoarthritis, especially in my thumb!” she says.  

Now, Mandi wants some additional support in getting moving again. She already enjoys taking her dogs out for a walk when she can (the Boxer particularly keeps Mandi on her toes!), but if she can become more active and get back to enjoying exercise, that will be a huge win. Any weight loss that follows will be a bonus too, as Mandi wishes to lose at least a stone! 

Along with getting back to the gym, something she wants to try out a variety of the classes at Wyre Forest Leisure Centre.  

Water-based classes could be a particularly good option as the soothing effect of the pool can help to reduce the perception of pain and lower anxiety, which are two common problems experienced with fibromyalgia.  

Our classes welcome people of any ability, meaning that Mandi’s fibromyalgia will be something she can work with, not against. 

If you’ve been inspired by Mandi’s story and are looking to set yourself a challenge for 2024, we have a range of gyms across a wealth of our centres which can cater to all abilities. If it’s your first time in the gym, or you’d simply like some guidance, we offer a range of introductory sessions including group introductions, 1-to-1 support sessions and monthly programme reviews. 

If you sign up online today, you could save on your joining fee. Ready to go? 


If Mandi's story inspires you, join online today and start your #ChallengeAccepted journey!

Join now



Challenge Accepted

Read about our other winners

Challenge Accepted winners
Prashant's story

Hear how Prashant has proved you're never too old to learn to swim!

Prashant's story
Kellie's story

After the onset of menopause, Kellie's determined to rediscover herself in 2024

Kellie's story