Southwell fitness fanatic to showcase her body in Miss Swimsuit UK

A fitness instructor from Southwell is set to showcase her fitness prowess as she shows off her body in Miss Swimsuit UK.

Fitness-mad Maddy Leather, who was born and educated in Southwell, left home to study psychology and psychology of sport before finding her niche in personal training.

Maddy Leather. Photographs via @kashkam from www.zeniphi.com.

Maddy Leather. Photographs via @kashkam from www.zeniphi.com.

She now works as an instructor in Nottingham and wanted to take the leap into the Miss Swimsuit UK world to show that a "five foot one vegan with a chunky butt and thighs" can do it too.

Maddy, who says the competition "empowers women" and "promotes sisterhood", said entering Miss Swimsuit UK is "exciting and scary".

She said: "Excitingly, this is my first swimsuit competition. Living and working in the 'fitness world' I have spent a lot of time around people who have competed in bodybuilding competitions.

"However, despite how much I respect and admire the people who do this, I question how positive bodybuilding is for people's state of mind.

Maddy Leather. Photographs via @kashkam from www.zeniphi.com.

Maddy Leather. Photographs via @kashkam from www.zeniphi.com.

"I wanted to do something to showcase my body and, more importantly, my body confidence, without feeling the pressure to get myself down to an unhealthily low level of body fat that is unsustainable. So, Miss Swimsuit UK sounded perfect as I really like the emphasis that's put on sisterhood by this organisation.

"A lot of my working life is managed through Instagram, where I go by @thefitveganchick, and there's a lot of pressure on women like myself to conform to a certain way of looking, particularly if you're viewed as a 'fitness girl'.

"I like to promote the idea that a healthy body can look a lot of different ways and is still beautiful whether there are abs showing or not and I'm very much a girl power advocate.

"For those reasons I am super excited to be a part of something that works to empower women and bring us together - something which is very very close to my heart.

Maddy Leather. Photographs via @kashkam from www.zeniphi.com.

Maddy Leather. Photographs via @kashkam from www.zeniphi.com.

"Being part of Swimsuit UK is simultaneously exciting and scary but it's something that has become all the more important to me since getting involved.

"I never entered this competition to win, I entered to have a goal to work towards, to get exposure and to show people that 5 foot 1 vegans with a chunky butt and thighs can do it too!

"Getting up there on that stage and feeling confident, instilling confidence in other people, inspiring them to believe that they can overcome things to get where they want to be and that there is no recipe for what makes a woman worthwhile and wonderful is the most important thing to me."

Maddy will take part in the Miss Swimsuit UK competition on June 1.