A SUPER strong powerlifter is limbering up to break a British record in a bid to raise thousands of pounds to help women in need.
Charlie Shotton-Gale is in training to break at least one of the four British powerlifting records, which will involve lifting a total of more than 530k.
The 29-year-old, of Grange Park, is hoping to raise more than £3,000 in sponsorship for Breaking Free Female Support, and has vowed to shave her head if she does not either reach the total or break a record.
“As long as I break one record or raise £3,000 then I don’t have to shave my hair off,” she said.
“I am between five and 10 kilograms away from each of the records at the moment. Sometimes 10k can feel a lot heavier when there is an extra 90k or more behind it.”
Breaking free is a non-profit group which supports women who have experienced any or all forms of trauma due to emotional, mental, physical, sexual abuse and rape.
The service, which is run by volunteers, offers counselling, email support, a helpline and weekend retreats twice a year.
“I have a friend who had been through sexual abuse and been through therapy on the NHS, but she said the therapy didn’t really benefit her. I found out about Breaking Free Female support and recommended it to her,” said Charlie.
“I was shocked they offer such a fantastic service for free. Any women in trouble can go there for support.”
Charlie’s record attempts will take place at the world championships in Puerto Rico from October 29 to November 5.
She will be attempting to break the record for the squat lift, which involves holding the bar across her shoulder blades, the bench lift, which involves using a bench press to hold the weight over her chest, and the deadlift, where she will lift the weight off the ground to hip height.
Charlie, who works at Pro Strength and Fitness at the Isis Trading Estate, got into powerlifting to build strength for rugby.
She is part of a team of fundraisers aiming to raise £10,000 for the project.
Michelle Parker, volunteer marketing and fundraising manager at Breaking Free, said: “We rely on donations from the community. In the four years we have been running we have helped more than 100 ladies.
“We’d like to thank Charlie for her tremendous support. She’s a high achiever and we’re extremely grateful for her help and support. The strength that Charlie posesses is synonymous with the inner strength that our ladies utilise in order to recover and we hope that Charlie can continue to act as an inspiration to other women.”
Breaking Free needs more than £10,000 a year and has applied for charity status.
To sponsor Charlie visit http://localgiving.com/charity/breakingfreesupportproject or phone 08000 80 74 08.