Get Fit and Make a Difference!

29 Aug

Dictionary Definition of Motivation: reason or reasons for acting or behaving in a particular way: escape can be a strong motivation for travel
• [mass noun] desire or willingness to do something; enthusiasm: keep staff up to date and maintain interest and motivation

So, you’ve got the sun on your skin, summer breeze in your hair and hopefully a little more time on your hands. You’ve been inspired by some amazing athletes and their sports at the Olympics, and just maybe my last article (See issue 2) gave you some food for thought! Something is stirring deep inside you and calling you to the park, pool, field and gym for your optimum fitness, stamina and – just maybe – a tight butt and abs!

But how do you stay motivated? We’ve all been there – you get yourself into a routine that’s working, exercise every other day, for instance. Then a friend asks you to the cinema on your exercise day. She can’t do any other day, you’ve wanted to see this film for ages and you do really need to un-wind. How much could one missed session hurt? The thing is, more often than not, that one missed session rolls into 2, and so on…you have a relative come to visit, you have an essay to do, and you’re exhausted. You didn’t see much improvement in your fitness, or body, anyway. You’ve come to lack motivation. And now you feel guilty about it, don’t you?

As a typically non-sporty girl who’s recently began getting back into it all, I’d like to share one of the best worst-kept secrets about the challenge of staying motivated; One of the best ways – if not THE best way – to stay motivated for your sport, is to fundraise! Whether raising funds for a charity such as Cancer Research UK or National AIDS Trust which carry out research into treatments and cures and provide support for the many people affected by these diseases, a charity like Oxfam which provides aid to people in some of world’s poorest places, or a lesser known charity struggling for funds – knowing that you are making a difference will give your motivation the boost it needs.


I raised £345.00 online (and a bit more offline) for Cancer Research UK. After a few years of saying we really should, my mum’s partner and I decided to run the 10km (6 miles) Race for Life in July, in memory of her parents. Race for Life is a great thing to do as you can choose whether you want to walk 5km, jog 5km or jog/run 10km. It’s also women only and there is a great atmosphere on the day. But more than that, whether you’ve been directly affected by cancer or not, it’s an amazing cause and easy to fundraise for. I definitely recommend signing yourself and your friends (you can do it in a group) up for your local Race for Life next year but until then, get people to sponsor you to do your chosen sport for a charity. I had only run 2 miles before the actual day and never imagined that I could run 6 – it just goes to show what the atmosphere of an event and the knowledge that you are making such a difference can do!

Running practice with my dog, Scooby. Kill 2 birds, says I!

I work full-time during my holidays from uni. My job is an office job in London and I live in Southampton meaning that I have a 2 hour commute to my work-place and back again every day. It’s tiring, time-consuming and when I get home in this heat I’m already hot, sticky and feel like collapsing on the couch. So, if I can find time to run around the block every other day (or about that often!) and raise the funds, anyone can!

Look to your role models; there are plenty of inspiring Olympians and Paralympians in the media at the moment to choose from, and aim to follow their lead. Whenever I felt like I couldn’t do it anymore, I thought of my loved ones who had died of cancer and reminded myself that whatever pain I was feeling is not as bad as the pain people with cancer suffer – or the pain those who lose people to cancer feel. Reminding yourself of what you are doing it for, and keeping your fundraising target in mind, will help you to feel amazing and do incredible things. Get fit and make a difference – what could be better?!

Fundraising Tips:

• Make a Justgiving page so that people can sponsor you by donating online – Go to and follow the steps. It’s really easy.
• Promote your efforts (with your Justgiving page link) on Facebook, Twitter and send it round to your email contacts!
• Ask a few celebrities on Twitter to re-tweet your link. You never know, they just might!
• Approach colleagues, fellow students, teachers and friends and staff at your extra-curricular activities and ask them to sponsor you.
• Sell things – car boot sale, cakes, a skill (e.g. teach others self-defence or how to sew for a small price)
• Hold a clothes swap – get all your friends together with all their old clothes and have a swapping session. Ask everyone who attends to make a donation. You can also have book swaps, games swaps…you get the idea.

Me, about to embark on my “little” jog at Race for Life Portsmouth!

And finally, whether you’re being sponsored to swim 5 miles, run a marathon, skip for as long as you can or make the world’s biggest chocolate brownie…GOOD LUCK!!!

About the writer: Bryony is a 3rd yr Applied Drama student. When she’s not teaching drama or writing (creative as well as articles) she’s attempting to fullfill her goal of living life to the max. Writing for health & well-being and making a difference here at Yellow Bunting, she loves star-gazing, the theatre, partying, surfing, being outdoors, cider n pasties.


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