I know that getting fit makes me a better mom; I feel better, I have a little more patience, and I have more energy when I’m fit. But sometimes, even though I know all of these things, I fall off the wagon, and sometimes I need a little extra motivation to get off the couch and get myself moving. This year, as it has been in the past couple of years, my fitness kick-start is an MS Society Fundraising bike tour.
Over the past year few years I’ve been participating in 90km Mountain Bike Tour in the Rocky Mountains just out side of Hinton, Alberta (about 40 minutes from Jasper National Park). These rides have been amazing, so hard (really, so hard) but such great a great time I continue register. This year we’re moving so I won’t be able to participate in the Hinton Ride but fortunately a quick search of the MS website has shown me that they host a ride close to our new home so my annual get back into shape plan can continue, and even better this year I may even be able to recruit some family members to join me because these events are always better with a team!
Reasons to Participate In a Fit Fundraising Activity
- It is a great incentive to get yourself in shape, nothing like the fear of not being able to make it up the first big hill, or down through the winding trails, to make you train just a little bit harder.
- You get to see the world from a different perspective. Every stretch of road looks vastly different from a bike than it does from the passenger seat of a car. These events also often take you off the main road (mountain bike tours in particular) and the scenery is breathtaking.
- You meet really amazing people. From your fellow participants, to the volunteers, to the community hosts. Everyone at the event is there with a common goal and a smile on their faces. Everyone is there to support each other as they ride, run, or walk for their cause.
- It feels good. Getting in shape feels good, and raising money for a cause you are connected to feels even better.
- Bragging rights. Your friends and coworkers will be in awe afterwards and that’s kind of cool.
Of course, these events aren’t really about getting fit (and the bragging rights), what they are about about finding a cause that is close to your heart and that will motivate you to keep going when the going gets tough. I chose the MS ride because as a Guide Leader one of my Guides is from a family affected by MS. I was inspired by the entire families courage and attitude and wanted to be able to help make a difference in their lives. As I started to fundraise for the event I was quite astonished by the number of friends who were also impacted by family members with MS. Every one of their stories helped push me through the 90km of bike trails. I know that the money I’ve raised is helping people in my community, people I know, and that is the best reason of all.
Have you ever participated in a fundraising ride or run? What are your main motivators for participating?