|Sandi weighed only six and a half stone
A MUM who battled against cancer and was reduced to a frail six-and-a-half stone has just been crowned Ms Britain after hitting the gym and building a jaw-droppingly muscly physique.
Sandi Birkett was diagnosed with potentially deadly endometrial cancer and faced a grim future.
But the mum-of-one refused to be beaten and instead hit the gym and started bodybuilding seriously.
Instead of giving in to the disease Sandi, from Burton-on-Trent, built a powerful muscular physique and now, at the age of 52, the 66kg blonde has flexed her way to the Ms Britain title.
Sandi had always been a fitness fanatic and even worked as a gym instructor.
But a cancer diagnosis a bombshell to even the most positive person.
Sandi said: “When I was diagnosed with cancer it felt like the end of the world.
“I was terrified of course and the treatment was severe but I knew I had to be strong for my son Kyle.
“I was tired and drained from both the illness and the treatment but I have always loved lifting weights and bodybuilding so I decided to get stuck in and beat the illness by lifting!”
When I was diagnosed with cancer it felt like the end of the world
Sandi Birkett won her first bodybuilding competition in 1991 when she was first crowned Ms Britain
Now 15 years later she has again won a national title for her muscles.
She said: “I knew I had beaten the cancer but carried on lifting and growing.
“Then a year ago I was asked to judge a bodybuilding contest and that re-kindled the fire, I knew I just had to get back on stage and flex!”
Less than 11 months later Sandi was doing exactly that at the NAC British Championships in Middelton, Manchester.
|Sandi was a fitness instructor before her diagnosis
She said: “It felt so good to be back. There is nothing to match the excitement of getting up on stage and showing the world the results of all the hours and days and weeks of hard work.
“Very few people understand what it takes to get your body stage ready – cardio at 5am every day, weights for two hours and all the while you are reducing the nutrients to your body to get rid of every scrap of body fat. It is bloody exhausting and not many people can do it – even fewer understand why we do it, but they would if they could stand on stage with a trophy.”
When not training or eating Sandi is a busy stepmum, a personal trainer with her own website at www.sandibirkett.com , and an administrator at Natural Health Care Centre, in Burton-on-Trent.
She trains at Physique and Fitness Gym, also in Burton On Trent.
|The mum’s competition record spans almost 25 years
Sandi’s competition history:
|Sandi preparing her food
- 1991 first Ms Britain and overall title.. Placed 3rd in World Champs in Switzerland 1 month later.
- 1992 Ms Britain and also Ms Europe in Athens ,Greece
- 1995 cancer strikes: After Kyle was born cancer diagnosed after battle with hospital – further complicated by a mis diagnosis and hospital ignoring signs.
- 1999 began training again. Rapid gains, my body responded well. Decided to compete at the WABBA British that year where I won the Ms Britain Physique title. Three weeks after that victory I took the Ms World Physique title in Frankfurt.
- 2002 A relapse in health coupled with personal problems led to 15 year break from the sport.
- 2014 Asked to judge at the NAC British championships rekindled the fire to compete. I said I would return to stage in memory of my mentor Bill Hemsworth who always believed in me.
- 2015 NAC Ms Britain Physique and 5th at the NAC European championships in Hamburg.
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