BODYBUILDING champ Lesley Haswell has been taking the plunge in the chilly North Sea as part of a gruelling training routine.
The super-fit 44-year-old has combined training for a charity swim with preparations for natural bodybuilding championships.
Lesley has been taking part in open water swims off Roker Pier ahead of today’s Great North Swim, which will see her compete in a mile race in Lake Windermere, in the Lake District, in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support.
The Fulwell mum-of-two said: “I do something every year for various charities, but this year I really wanted to do something for Macmillan. I have lost four close friends to cancer in the last four years.
“I also have another friend who has grade-three brain cancer and his wife has said she’d struggle to cope without the support of the Macmillan nurses.
“With this charity you can see exactly where the money goes and I think they do a fabulous job.”
Lesley has been training with the Sun City Triathlon team while also attending Fitness 2000 in Roker, in preparation for forthcoming qualifying rounds for BF National Federation and Natural Physique Association’s bodybuilding contests.
Lesley, who runs her own sports injury clinic, Physique Management, said: “I’m dieting at the minute and have lost a lot of body fat. I’m only eight-and-a-half stone so I’m not sure how I’ll cope with the cold when I’m bobbing along.”
Lesley will be swimming in memory of friends including Billy Owen, Julia Stewart and Lisa Pollard.
l You can sponsor Lesley at www.justgiving.com/lesleyhaswell.