Every other year the country gets Red Nose Fever as Comic Relief descends upon us. Setup in 1985 by Richard Curtis and Lenny Henry, Comic Relief aims to raise money to help people both here in the UK and in struggling African nations. One thing that Comic Relief is undoubtedly known for is its flagship event, Red Nose Day, where millions of us stick on a silly red nose and sit down with our families and friends to watch the biennial telethon. It is more than just one night though. Throughout the month of March people all over the country are doing their bit to help those most in need.
It is usually the sister project, Sport Relief, that is more associated with using health and fitness events to raise money, after all this is about doing something funny for money. You would be crazy though to think that we can’t use this tremendous event and our passion for fitness together to help the world. For as long as charities have existed, participating in fitness events and challenges have been a great way to raise money. Sponsored runs, walks, swims and cycles are all traditional money raising methods and they certainly don’t do any harm to are health. That can be anything from running on a treadmill, to climbing Mount Kilimanjaro! Every year someone is swimming across a new stretch of water or climbing up some mountain to raise as much money as possible.
The primary goal here is to raise money, that is obvious. Charitable events can also serve as brilliant motivation tools as well. If you struggle to motivate yourself to get up and get fit, then what better than doing it to help others as well as yourself?
The great thing about charity is that it is easy to get involved with, especially when it is as big as Comic Relief. All you need is a fitness challenge and a sponsorship form. So get creative with it! If you raise money with a sponsored run that is great, but can you think of something else? Like I say, this is about doing something funny for money. So run in a costume, run in your underwear or run in whatever way you think is fun! And that is just one example, you don’t have to run. Swim the equivalent of the Channel in your local pool or row it in your local gym. Use this great cause to inspire your fitness.
Nutrition doesn’t have to be ignored. The bake sale is a classic way to help raise money. How about making a healthier bake sale? Use the surge in popularity for protein-rich snacks to create delicious treats that are good for us as well. This way you can raise a ton of money and still stick to your nutritional plan.
Another brilliant thing is that you can set your own challenges. Why not get together with some friends and come up with a great idea together? You get to achieve your fitness goals, spend time with your friends and raise money for people who really need it. What could be better?
Sport Relief will always be the time when fitness fanatics will come out in force but that doesn’t mean we can’t do our bit for Comic Relief too. If you find yourself getting bored of your standard routine this is the perfect opportunity to jazz it up and loosen up a bit, even if it is just for one day. So this month try and get involved with whatever you can to help raise money for Comic Relief and improve your health and fitness!