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Leigh's Awesomeness Challenge

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Thanks for visiting the Awesomeness Challenge Page!

I am raising money for Tommy's, and First Touch because they are two causes that are very important to me in Hugo's memory. You can donate to either cause - or both, if you are feeling generous!

What is the Awesomeness Challenge, and why am I doing it?

My son Hugo was born on 20 February 2014.

I was only 24 weeks' pregnant: Hugo had to be born by emergency Caesarean section because I had the rare, life-threatening pregnancy illness HELLP syndrome. HELLP syndrome is a complication of pre-eclampsia, and will cause multiple organ failure if left untreated. For more information about HELLP syndrome please visit

Sadly, despite every possible treatment being tried Hugo was too small and premature. Hugo died in my arms, aged 35 days.

I am doing the Awesomeness Challenge on 20 February 2017. The aim of the challenge is to raise awareness of:

- HELLP syndrome;

- premature babies, and the battles they face;

- Baby loss, and the need for bereaved parents to receive timely support;

- Living with grief; and living with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

I have chosen to do this challenge on 20 February because it celebrates my beautiful boy's birthday, and the fact that I could have died the same day but I am still here.

Why a fitness challenge in particular, you may ask? Fitness has been key in helping me manage my PTSD. I want to show others that living with grief, and PTSD has many challenges but a positive life IS possible.

The distances and repetitions in the fitness challenge have relevance to Hugo's life, and to HELLP syndrome.

420 metre run (Hugo weighed just 420 grams, less than a pound, when he was born).

24 TRX rows (I was 24 weeks' pregnant when Hugo was born).

600 metres on the ski ergo (my LFTs - liver enzymes - were 600, which is several times higher than normal).

14 press ups with leg jacks from a Bosu (to signify the year)

20 burpee box jumps (to signify the date)

50 second plank (my platelet level was 50. Platelets are what helps the blood to clot, and normal levels start at around 150)

1.8 km bike (I lost 1800ml, or just over 3 pints, of blood during the C section)

16 sandbell rainbow slams (Hugo was 16 weeks premature)

36 kettle bell goblet squats (I spent 36 hours in intensive care after Hugo's birth)

35 mummy sit ups (Hugo lived for 35 days)

7 boxing combos
(my  haemoglobin levels were 7, less than half of the bottom end of the healthy range, when Hugo was born - acute anaemia is a key symptom of
HELLP syndrome)

2013 m row (my blood pressure was around 200/130 - hypertensive crisis, and at significant risk of stroke)

A huge thank you to the fab team at Fitness First Bedford, who are supporting me with this challenge!

Whether you decide to donate to Tommy's or to First Touch, and no matter how large or small your contribution, all monies raised will help other families like mine, so thank you very much.

The fundraising target is on the right. Your donation can really help me smash this goal.


Donate to First Touch by sending the code HCDP80 and your amount £x to 70070.

Donate to Tommy’s by sending the code HCDP90 and your amount £x to 70070.

(HCDP is Hugo’s initials: Hugo Christopher Dylan Parker).

You can follow my training progress on Instagram (@leighakendall) and Facebook (Headspace Perspective).

Remember: Donating through JustGiving is simple, fast and totally secure. Your details are safe with JustGiving - they'll never share them with anyone or send you unwanted emails. Once you donate, they'll send your money directly to the charity. They'll make sure Gift Aid (an additional 25%) is reclaimed on every eligible donation by a UK taxpayer, too. That means more money goes to the charity, faster, with JustGiving.

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Raised: 169%

Team target: £1,000.00

Raised so far: £1,688.16

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Leigh Kendall

Leigh's The Awesomeness Challenge 2017: Celebrating Life, and Remembering Hugo.

49 donations



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Leigh Kendall

Leigh's Awesomeness Challenge 2017: Celebrating Life Remembering Hugo. (Tommys)

38 donations



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