Meet the Sunderland bride who’s racing to the aisle after winning fitness competition

Fitness coach Tim Ford putting Echo competition winner Alexandra Reay thrugh her paces at The Fitness Bank

Fitness coach Tim Ford putting Echo competition winner Alexandra Reay thrugh her paces at The Fitness Bank

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A budding bride is hoping to walk down the aisle a dress size smaller after winning our fitness competition.

We teamed up with Sunderland fitness specialist Tim Ford for a New Year, New You contest in a bid to give one Wearsider the chance to change their lifestyle for 2016.

Alexandra is getting married in May

Alexandra is getting married in May

After scores of entries, Alexandra Reay, 21, from South Hylton, was chosen as the winner.

She’s got a very specific goal in mind – she wants to look her best when she marries Mark Watson, 22, at St Mark’s Church, Millfield, ahead of a reception at the Quayside Exchange.

And she’s got until May 22 to make a change.

Worth about £400, Alexandra’s prize is 12 weeks of one-on-one personal training and advice with Tim, plus free use of the Fitness Bank in Douro Terrace, Ashbrooke, where the health and fitness coach holds his training sessions.

She said: “I’ve been wanting to do something, but I work 12-hour days and when I’m not working I’m planning the wedding. It’s getting closer and closer to the day and I spotted the competition on the Echo’s Facebook page.

“I never really win anything so I was over the moon when I found out. I’ve already had my first session and it’s been a real eye-opener.

“My approach to fitness before has been sporadic, but I think it will really help having someone there to offer guidance and support. Mark had been really supportive too.”

The customer service adviser for EE is hoping to slim from a size 16 to a 12, and trainer Tim, who runs Live Well Training, says it’s achievable.

“I chose Alexandra over the other entries because she had a specific goal in mind and she seemed really motivated,” said Tim. “It’s easy to look at goals as short-term, but I’m hoping to give her tools she can take away to make a difference to her lifestyle.

“If she works hard and sticks to the programme, she could potentially lose a stone-and-a-half for the wedding.

“I’m going to keep the sessions varied so she doesn’t get bored. There will be a mixture of cardiovascular and weight training.