Entries for the Simplyhealth Great North 10k are open. Enter at: Greatrun.org/North10k

A mum who was diagnosed with breast cancer made sure that she carried on exercising throughout her treatment will take on a 10k challenge to celebrate beating the disease.

Julie Cosgrove, from Denton in Newcastle, was diagnosed with breast cancer in the summer of 2016 when she returned home from Germany with her husband who had just finished his career in the army.

Following a mammogram appointment when she registered with a GP, Julie was shocked to discover that she had cancer.

Following a rollercoaster of emotions, Julie started undergoing treatment for the disease, which included surgery and radiotherapy.

But Julie decided to carry on with her life and joined a women’s fitness class as well as taking up running while she was undergoing treatment.

Julie only paused for a break the day before her lumpectomy operation in October before returning to running following her three week recovery. Following her radiotherapy in December, she decided to take on the Simplyhealth Great North 10k on Sunday 9 July to raise money for Breast Cancer Now, who she received support from during her treatment.

Julie finally received the news that she had beaten the cancer in Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary and only returns to hospital for further check ups.

She will remain on medication for five years but is determined to give something back to the charity that supported her.

Julie, 54, said: “I moved back to Newcastle after living away in Germany as my husband had just finished 36 years in the army. “I had to register with a local GP and I had a routine appointment for a mammogram sent to me.

“Just over a week later from that appointment, my heart sank as following a biopsy, I was diagnosed with breast cancer.

“I went through a roller coaster of emotions, from feeling a complete fraud because I didn’t really feel unwell to begin with, to thinking why has this happened to me?

“I had to pull myself together and carry on with my life as I didn’t want to be defined by the cancer.

“I go to an exercise class called Skinnypigs and I decided to keep attending as well as taking up running.

“I kept this up through all of my diagnosis and treatment and only stopped the day before I had an operation to remove the cancer.

“A three week course of radiotherapy also started in December but I was determined to carry on living a normal life. I made sure I went to work and exercised.

“The care I received from the breast cancer care team was amazing and it was this that made me want to do something to support them.”

Julie will join 5,000 others for the Simplyhealth Great North 10k, which is the North East’s biggest 10k running event. Participants are taken on a scenic tour of the NewcastleGateshead Quayside, passing the likes of Sage Gateshead, the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art and the Gateshead Millennium Bridge.

Runners then enter the iconic Gateshead International Stadium, before finishing on the track in front of cheering crowds.

The event also is the official training run for the Simplyhealth Great North Run, the world’s biggest half marathon. Julie will also be taking on the Simplyhealth Great North Run in September and hopes that the 10k will be a good stepping stone in her challenge.

She added: “My training for the event is going fairly well. I am still attending my exercise classes but I run before I go to work and on a weekend.

“I have made it up to six miles which is a big achievement for me. It’s a huge rollercoaster of emotions for myself and my family because I know if I had not found the lump I may not have been so lucky.

“I am truly grateful for all the support I have received from both organisations and other people so I think that it is important I give something back to help raise awareness about how important it is to go to appointments.”

To support Julie, visit her fundraising page.

Entries for the Simplyhealth Great North 10k are open. Enter at: Greatrun.org/North10k