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‘My hair and eyelashes froze’: mum completes daunting challenge

PUBLISHED: 13:33 19 March 2020 | UPDATED: 13:33 19 March 2020

Alex Swift completed a two-day cross country skiing trek in Sweden for Walk the Walk breast cancer charity. Photo: Alex Swift/Walk the Walk

Alex Swift completed a two-day cross country skiing trek in Sweden for Walk the Walk breast cancer charity. Photo: Alex Swift/Walk the Walk

Alex Swift/Walk the Walk

A Norfolk mother said she “felt incredible” after she completed a treacherous two-day Arctic challenge in aid of a breast cancer charity.

Alex Swift completed a two-day cross country skiing trek in Sweden for Walk the Walk breast cancer charity. Photo: Alex Swift/Walk the WalkAlex Swift completed a two-day cross country skiing trek in Sweden for Walk the Walk breast cancer charity. Photo: Alex Swift/Walk the Walk

When Alex Swift, 30, a wedding planner from Rudham, near Fakenham, signed up for Walk the Walk’s 2020 Arctic challenge she did not realise just how difficult it would be.

But on Monday, March 2, the mother-of-one completed the two-day cross-country skiing trek through the Swedish mountains, in the Abisko national park, and raised nearly £2,000 for the breast cancer charity which raises money through power walking challenges.

Mrs Swift said: “The challenge itself was very daunting and it was a very different experience. It was so cold and nothing like I could have ever imagined.

“At one point it was minus 26, my hair and eyelashes froze, it was quite intense.

Alex Swift completed a two-day cross country skiing trek in Sweden for Walk the Walk breast cancer charity. Photo: Alex Swift/Walk the WalkAlex Swift completed a two-day cross country skiing trek in Sweden for Walk the Walk breast cancer charity. Photo: Alex Swift/Walk the Walk

“We did 10-and-a-half hours on the first day until we reached the Abiskojaure Mountain hut and on the second and final day we did another 10 hours back.

“It was just all vast white snow and icy tracks. You had to concentrate because it could be quite treacherous, but I had my daughter’s bunny Bob to keep me safe.”

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Despite pushing herself to her physical limits in minus 26 degrees, looking back on her experience Mrs Swift said it was a “mental battle” and now she had proven that she could do anything she put her mind to.

Alex Swift (centre) completed a two-day cross country skiing trek in Sweden for Walk the Walk breast cancer charity. Photo: Alex Swift/Walk the WalkAlex Swift (centre) completed a two-day cross country skiing trek in Sweden for Walk the Walk breast cancer charity. Photo: Alex Swift/Walk the Walk

She added: “It was incredible when we could finally see the finish line.

“We all really had to push through at the end because you could feel every ache in your body, but we did it and we all felt a real sense of accomplishment.

“Having time to reflect, I still have the frostbite in my left toe but I feel really proud of myself because day-to-day you can get bogged down with doing the school run and being a wife, sometimes you lose yourself a little bit. But it just goes to show you can do anything you put your mind to.”

Over the past 10 years, Mrs Swift has raised more than £11,000 for Walk the Walk and hopes to carry on supporting them in the future.

Alex Swift (middle) completed a two-day cross country skiing trek in Sweden for Walk the Walk breast cancer charity. Photo: Alex Swift/Walk the WalkAlex Swift (middle) completed a two-day cross country skiing trek in Sweden for Walk the Walk breast cancer charity. Photo: Alex Swift/Walk the Walk


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