A WOMAN who lost eight stone in weight is ready to take on her next challenge, a 100km cycle ride around the Chilterns.

Sarah Liveing, 53, from Gerrards Cross, said she was a size 26 and weighed 18 stone in 2004, however, after tackling a life of healthy eating and a number of walking regimes she says she is ready for anything.

The mother of three said: “My personal story is of course predominantly about weight-loss. However it goes much deeper than that.

“At my heaviest I was battling depression, anxiety and low self-esteem. Walking helped to banish those by giving me routine and structure in my life and goals to aim towards.

“Exercise is crucial for one’s mental health too. The endorphins released when we exercise triggers happiness within.”

Sarah will now be pushing herself to the limit in the Chiltern 100 Sportive covering 122km of the Chiltern landscape, including 1,897 metres of cycling climbing.

Her healthy new life sees her often competing in races and has led her to create her businesses Walking for Weightloss and Walking Works where she teaches about the benefits of walking and healthy living to individuals and businesses respectively.

After her incredible weight loss, Sarah is still shocked about the competitions she enters.

She said: “If somebody had told me several years ago that I’d be regularly competing in sporting events I would have thought they were crazy. In 2004 I was a size 26 and 18 stone - not exactly Victoria Pendleton material!

“I see it as extremely important to continually challenge myself. I feel like a new woman these days; exercise has given me such a boost in confidence and energy.

“It is a path I would like to continue on, so I take every chance to test myself. It’s a way to keep life exciting.”

Sarah will be competing in the Chiltern 100 with her husband Chris and sees the event as good ‘practise’ for her next even bigger challenge- the Tour de Type 1 cycle, an 85-mile stretch of Tour de France in mid-June.