A former county athletics champion is hoping to inspire others after shrugging-off injury to claim a UK national title.
Former St Thomas a Becket and Ossett Academy student Ruth Dales, 33, was a Wakefield Harriers starlet who was ranked in the top five in her age group and claimed the 100m hurdles county title four times.
However, Dales underwent lengthy rehabilitation and physiotherapy for an underlying pelvis problem that threatened to bring an end to the training regime she loved.
The healthcare professional, now living in Sheffield, faced up to the adversity and her determination to continue training paid off when she claimed the UK national Bikini Fitness title earlier this year.
The bodybuilding and fitness discipline is contested by athletes throughout the world and despite Dales only entering competition for the first time 12 months ago, she is now on the verge of representing her country on the world stage.
Dales said: “I am very competitive and I was determined to try out other sports as part of the recovery from injury.
“I fell into bikini fitness by accident but found I was good at it and it allowed me to compete against others.”
She added: “There are stereotypes and misconceptions about body fitness disciplines but it is competitive sport and I am on a mission to inspire others to achieve their fitness goals.”
Dales’ focus on nutrition and a healthy approach to building fitness and confidence has helped her book a place in the Arnold Classic Europe in Madrid this week.
She will then represent the UK in the World Fitness Championships, in Montreal, next month.