Lacinda committed to exercising for one hour each day for the first 30 days of 2015, to help raise money for World Vision's maternal and child health projects.
In my last few days of the World Vision ’30 for 30′ Fitness Challenge, I sat on the warm sand at Wanda Beach, embraced the refreshing summer breeze after an hour long run and I reflected on the month of January.
New Year – new start – new challenges! Why not start 2015 in a positive way and help those that cannot help themselves? The ’30 for 30′ was a perfect opportunity for this as I would not only discover the limits to which I could push myself physically but I would also realize that my passion in life really was to help others and in all, do my absolute best to find ‘hope’ within ‘hopelessness’.
It is with that said that I decided to embark on the journey with an initial goal to raise $500. My family and friends must have thought I was crazy. Firstly, because I was posting photos of myself on Facebook exercising at 9am on New Year’s morning – when most of them were still in bed (probably with sore heads). Secondly, due to the fact that I was asking them for them for their support in donations in January – right after December, the most expensive month of the year!
But, to my surprise – and I couldn’t be more grateful for their support and generosity – I was able to reach my $500 goal whilst only half way through the challenge!
I couldn’t believe it but thought, there’s no point in committing myself to the challenge if I’m not going to put 110% into it. So I increased my goal to $750.
I flooded my Facebook, Twitter and Instagram with updates regarding the ’30 for 30′ Challenge. Thanks to the wonderful power of Social Media I was able to raise the extra $250.
It is with so much gratitude that I can say I ended up raising over $830 and I couldn’t be more thankful to those that not only believed in me, but also in the incredible work World Vision have and will continue to accomplish!
So raising money was quite a success for me throughout the entirety of the challenge. That meant my exercise routines and fitness goals had to match the enthusiastic nature of my sponsors.
As a dancer, I had always been active and fit but when it came to things like exercising outdoors or in a gym I wasn’t quite familiar with it all or completely coordinated at executing it either. Nevertheless, this was the month for me to try (but not necessarily perfect) everything; running, walking, cycling, rowing, weight classes, step classes, aerobics classes, swimming – you name it, I tried it!
I wanted not only to push myself physically but make it enjoyable for myself – I kept motivated that way. So my friends and family joined in on the challenge every now and then too!
Were there days that I skimped out on an hour long class, walk or run? Yes. Were there days where I just didn’t have a chance in the morning to carry out my strengthening exercises? Yes. But what I never said yes to was giving up – I just did things a little different those days!
I ensured that I walked to the shops if I wasn’t able to get to a Gym class or made sure I did my strengthening exercises in the evening before bed instead of during the morning. Just because I was out of time or was a little too tired that day didn’t mean I was going to give up and say it was ‘too difficult’ because when I put things into perspective, my hour long run was nothing compared to the kilometres children in developing countries have to walk every day just to collect fresh water.
My tiredness on a Sunday morning was nothing in comparison to the exhaustion and weariness mothers must feel when giving birth to their children without sanitary equipment or proper medical assistance. My sore muscles of a night as I lay down in my own comfortable bed could in no way match the pain a mother and father must feel when they lose their child in just the first 30 days of their life. I was committed to this challenge – I was going to dedicate the first 30 days of my year to the first 30 days of their life!
Late last year, I attended a World Vision Youth Conference, ‘Equip’, in Melbourne. We had a speaker explain to us the true meaning of the word ‘passion’. We were told that ‘passion’ in Latin means, ‘to suffer’. This idea resonated within me so much as I felt it truly depicted and explained the burning desire I have to make a positive difference in this world and see social change and development really occur.
The ’30 for 30′ challenge provided me with the perfect opportunity to start 2015 in a positive way, in that it allowed me to fulfil my passion for helping others and I know it is just the beginning of my journey towards social justice and equity.