What Sporting Challenge Is Right for You?

October 21, 2016 James 0

We all like to challenge ourselves to try something different, to push our limits and to test ourselves in some way. When it comes to sporting challenges, there are plenty and a great many of them are tied up with charities, meaning that not only do you challenge yourself but you raise money for a good cause at the same time.

The big challenges

One of the most popular sporting challenges is to climb Mount Kilimanjaro on behalf of a charity, with Help For Heroes being one example of a British charity that often arranges these events. Of course, climbing one of the highest mountains in the world isn’t something you do without training and there are plenty of ways to get yourself into condition for such an adventure.

Another serious challenge on a different scale is the Empire State Building Run-Up. If stairs are no fear for you, then scaling the 1576 steps to the top will be a walk in the park – or not! Some people do the run in association with a charity while others do it for the sense of accomplishment that it brings and the amazing views when you reach the top.

Adventure challenges

There are plenty of adventure challenges that aren’t quite as extreme as these examples however. The National Three Peaks Challenge is a serious one but one that anyone can train to do. It involves climbing the three highest peaks in England, Wales and Scotland within a 24-hour period – Snowdon, Scafell Pike and Ben Nevis. People often do it as a group both for safety and to spur one another on to achieve the goal.

If you fancy a trip to Walt Disney World in Florida but feel the need to have a sporting challenge while you are there, then head over in January for the Marathon Weekend. The marathon is ideal for all runners and there is a variety of races available from 5 kilometres to full marathons and even children’s events.

Cycling challenges

The country is filled with enjoyable and challenging bike treks and one of these may be perfect for your next sporting challenge. The ultimate ride is from Land’s End to John O’Groats at a staggering 874 miles and this has been a sporting challenge since back in the 1870s.

A more recent addition to the list of great cycling challenges is the Tour de Yorkshire route. At 74 miles long it is currently ridden by some of the biggest names in the sport and is the British miniature version of the Tour de France. There are some challenging climbs and plenty of breath taking scenery along the way.

One of the first cycle challenges in the UK was from London to Brighton and the 54-mile ride is still popular today. It took 12 hours back then on a bike called a velocipede with hand cranks at the front! Modern bikes have come a long way and it only take around a third of that time to complete the route now.

5 Athletes to Watch in 2017

October 8, 2016 James 0

From the Olympics to the latest football tournaments, talent has been all around us in 2016 and a few names are already making their presence felt. But who is going to catch our attention in the next twelve months and fulfil their potential? Who are the top athletes to watch in 2017?

Football – Marcus Rashford

Everyone in football is talking about Manchester Uniteds Marcus Rashford with his early season good form and impressive record for England at Under-21 level. Currently 18 years old, Rashford seems to have a calm approach to the game that means he isn’t being overwhelmed by his sudden rise to fame (and equally sudden rise in wage packet!). Now under Jose Mourinho, 2017 could be a pivotal year for the young man as he begins to build on his successful start to the season.

Golf – Thomas Pieters

If you watched the Ryder Cup recently, then one name stood out on the European team – a young Belgian player called Thomas Pieters. Currently just 24, Pieters scored the most points for a rookie in the tournament’s history, winning four out of the five games he featured in. What was also impressive was his calm demeanour and steady approach to the game – despite the pressure of the occasion, he stuck to what he knew and was very impressive. At 6ft 5inch, he is also a very tall young man who literally stands out in 2017!

Cricket – Zafar Ansari

After a false start to his England career due to a broken thumb, Zafar Ansari looks set to get his opportunity in 2017 to impress. The 24 year old is a spin bowler who has had an impressive season for Surrey this year and was due to travel with England to the UAE earlier this year. Just days after the announcement, he broke his thumb and was unable to travel. He is part of the team touring Bangladesh this winter and if he fulfils his potential, could go on to cement his place in the side next year.

Boxing – Anthony Joshua

Anthony Joshua has already had an impressive year in 2016 and looks set to continue this into 2017. From his first rise to fame when he won gold at the 2012 Olympics, Joshua has held a number of titles and currently has the IBF heavyweight title, since April this year. He was the first British heavyweight to hold a gold medal and the world title of the professional sanctioning body at the same time. And he has signed a big money deal for the coming year so we await news of his next big fight.

Athletics – Kendra Harrison

What do you do if you miss out on the team for the Olympic Games? Go out and break the world record in your sport is one answer and that’s what US hurdler Kendra Harrison did. The 24 year old missed out on qualification for the Rio Olympics but has already shown her potential for 2017 at the London Muller Anniversary Games where she broken the World Record for the 100 metres hurdles that had stood for 28 years before that.

Get The Most Out of Your Sporting Activity

September 19, 2016 James 0

Let’s face it, most of us have very busy lives. Between jobs, family and socialising, it can be tricky to find enough time to take up a sporting activity. Yet we know that exercise is crucial for our health and wellbeing. Then perhaps the trick is to get the most out of our sporting activities rather than simply trying to add more. But how can we do this?

Do things you enjoy

There are a lot of people into running at the moment and while this is great if it is your thing, there are also plenty of great sporting events to choose from if it isn’t. Studies show that if you do something you enjoy, you are more likely to make the time to do it. So if you love playing football, then join a local team. Or if you like walking, find a local walking club.

Find your motivation

Another similar point is to find what motivates you and use that to propel yourself into activity. One idea for this is to get involved with a charity challenge that means you train for an activity, raise money for a good cause and get to do something challenging. The idea of raising money as well as pushing yourself works as great motivation for many people and there are loads of ideas out there for challenges to get involved with from walks to marathons to mountain climbing expeditions.

Track what you do

Keep a track of the activity you do whether this is in a book, on your smartphone or any other means. That way you can look back at your progress and see what you achieved. It also gives you motivation to beat what you have done before and push yourself to something new. You can track as much as you want from basic information right through to full details and even treat yourself to a fitness tracker if you want to most information.

Go on a sporting holiday

Going on holiday is sometimes about having a break and relaxing. But other times you can look to go on a sporting holiday or try a new activity that challenges you. There are holidays ideal for thrill-seekers that include activities such as mountain hikes, ice climbing and even sand-skiing.

Another alternative is to go for VIP sports tours where you can throw yourself into an activity for the whole holiday. Ideas including golfing holidays, tennis breaks and even taking part in triathlon or a marathon while being away from home.

Do activities with the family

Sometimes you can struggle to make time for sports due to the responsibilities of life so why not bring the kids along with you? Find family activities ranging from after dinner walks, family gym sessions and of course football matches in the local park. Meet up with other families who are looking for some sporting exercise and enjoy a group session where the kids get involved and everyone gets that much needed exercise.