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Sea Change for Mental Health: London to Brighton Cycle Ride

Sea Change for Mental Health is a challenge funded and organised by The Lead Agency, a Tech Track 100 company that operates in the media industry. On Friday 7 June, 100 people representing some of the UK’s biggest media agencies will take part in a 63-mile cycle from London to Brighton to raise money in aid of NABS. Charlie Parkin, fundraising director here at NABS is one of those people.

We asked Charlie a bit more about the ride and how she has been preparing.

Why are you taking part in the bike ride?

The Sea Change Mental Health cycle ride is in support of NABS so keen to take part. I love sport and it is great for my mental wellbeing. I also love a challenge, and this introduced me to road bikes, cleats etc a whole new world – far away from my first love running (as a young woman I ran for my county and have never stopped!).

What has your training regime consisted of?

I try to ride or go to a spin class once a week. I built up from 15 miles– with my final run being 53 miles last Sunday. I now know Richmond Park and it’s undulations like the back of my hand. 6.3 miles of pure joy!

Remember to stretch when you have finished.

How is the bike ride going to help NABS?

The ride is going to be amazing for NABS. With service usage up 20% year-on-year, the fantastic £25k that The Lead Agency will raise will help to ensure we are able to meet the needs of all individuals who seek our assistance.

The ride has also been fantastic for promoting exercise which is great for wellbeing. Of the 100 riders taking part many will, like me, be novices to road bikes and long bike rides. So great to get people enthused and excited about stuff outside of work.

What are you most looking forward to about the ride?

Getting to Brighton! I’m looking forward to the whole day – the countryside, the camaraderie and the joy of achievement.

What’s your top tip for anybody undertaking a long bike ride?

  • Get the bike you are going to ride well ahead of the event. Make sure it is in good working order.
  • If you are using cleats, get your own shoes and practise with them.
  • Invest in good padded shorts!
  • Make sure you build up your distance over several months.
  • Try to find a buddy to cycle with – it so much more fun sharing the experience.
  • Sports gels are brilliant if you need help getting up hills!

If you would like to sponsor Charlie, you can find her Just Giving page here. All proceeds go directly to NABS, helping us support the wellbeing of everyone in advertising and media.

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