Chris Pearce gets in shape for us

"Hi, I'm Chris. I am 32, and work at a residential boarding school for boys with autism and special educational needs. I live with my partner in Towcester, Northants with our 3 year old daugther Matilda and 2 dogs. 

In 2012 I was diagnosed with a grapefruit sized pelvic tumour growing off a nerve sheathe, luckily it was benign but needed extensive surgery to remove it and a long road to recovery with extensive physiotherapy to learn how to walk normally again as I lost a lot of function in my right leg and foot. After a brief period of calm, I was rushed to hospital in December 2013 with a bowel blockage where scar tissue from my big surgery had adhered my small intestine closed in several places. I needed more surgery to correct this. During all this mayhem a small tumour had been discovered in my left lung which turned out to be malignant small cell lung cancer, especially rare in young adults and commonly found in elderly people. I had 2 surgeries to remove firstly the tumour, and secondly a preventative surgery to remove the lower lobe of the left lung and the surrounding lymph nodes. I have had a few scares over the last few years with reoccurance but currently I am sitting on around 18 months in remission. 

I am a keen fitness enthusiast and have lost over 3 stone, gained a lot of muscle and got into good shape despite limitations from all the surgeries. I will competing in the Body Transformation Class at Pure Elite in April, a premium fitness model show. It has taken over a year and a half of early morning runs, dieting, weights and dedication to get to where I am. I am doing it to show cancer survivors can overcome limitations, and we shouldn't be ashamed of our scars from surgeries and treatments.

I chose the Eleanor Rose Foundation for several reasons. I studied at Leeds University with Eleanor from 2001 - 2004 on the Broadcast Journalism Course, I followed her blog through her battles and challenges, and she even took time to message me when I found out I had my first tumour. I strongly believe in the aim of the charity and giving the chance for people battling cancer to enjoy themselves and have experiences that take away from the stress and trauma of fighting cancer. I am proud to represent the charity and will give it my best on the stage in April."

To donate to Chris and Ellie's Friends, please visit https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/pearceythesurv...

Watch Chris' YouTube video, "From Tumour to Trainer"