“I quit smoking 6 years ago and last weekend I ran my 139th marathon!”
In case you didn’t already know Wednesday 8th March is national No Smoking Day so to honour the occasion One You Hounslow’s digital marketing assistant Pia Jenkins-Henham spoke to 46 year old ex-smoker and marathon runner Stefan Klincewicz. Stefan had been smoking for over 20 years until he decided, 6 years ago, that it was time to quit for good.
“Last weekend I ran my 139th marathon. When I smoked I was completely inactive, there was no physical activity at all and my running came off the back of stopping smoking. I started doing local park runs to get the urge to smoke off of my mind when I began quitting,” Stefan said.
Stefan ditched his habit six years ago and since then he has run various different marathons including the London Marathon and a race across one of the world’s most inhospitable environments: The Marathon des Sables.
“The pinnacle in my running was The Marathon des Sables which is a 100 mile race across the Sahara desert; it is the toughest foot race on the planet. That was three years ago now and all off the back of stopping smoking.”
Stefan joined his local NHS stop smoking group after seeing posters asking him “do you want to quit smoking?” and he had decided, yes, he did!
“I joined my local NHS stop smoking service and they really taught me how to use the patches and gums properly. After trying to give up before, I realised I hadn’t been using these correctly. It helps to have a community of people who are also going through the same as me to talk to.”
Stefan runs a marathon every fortnight and says his entire family has benefited from his lifestyle change. He tells me his wife now runs too and his children are all very active.
So, does Stefan have any advice for those trying to quit?
“Definitely do not try and do it by yourself, use the tools that are available and the NHS in terms of the smoking support. Talk to others about how you’re feeling because quitting smoking was tough. I would suggest picking up a sport to keep occupied. It can be anything: get out on your bike or go for a walk…just get active” Stefan said.
What can YOU do for No Smoking Day 2017?!
One You Hounslow Stop Smoking Specialist Jessica Cox says: “Sign up with the One You Hounslow Stop Smoking Service this No Smoking Day to get advice on how to become smoke-free. Our specialist advisors and one to one support can take you through a 6-12 week programme that provides medication and carbon monoxide testing. You are 4 times more likely to stop with NHS support than going it alone”.
On Wednesday 8th March One You Hounslow will be at a number of different local venues offering support to people interested in stopping smoking. The team will be offering carbon monoxide readings, lung age tests and advice on how to sign up for local stop smoking support.
Where can you find us?
Our outreach events will be at the following locations and times:
Heart of Hounslow Centre for Health: 10am to 2pm
Morrison’s Brentford: 11.30am to 2.30pm
West Thames College: 11.30am to 1.30pm
West Middlesex University Hospital: 11am to 3pm
If you would like support to help you to stop smoking please call One You Hounslow on 020 8973 3530, e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our stop smoking web page here.