Two of Retirement Line’s employees are training hard for an upcoming Muddy Run to raise funds for Cancer Research - and it’s not their first time taking on some serious fundraising! Denise Hyland and Nicola Stevens are both dedicated to doing their bit for a good cause.
Annuity Specialist Denise cycled more than 250 miles from Nairobi in Kenya to the shores of Lake Victoria in aid of Women V Cancer back in 2013. The build up to the event saw her take on 30-mile training rides, overhaul her diet completely and spend copious amounts of time in the gym. It was worth the effort as Denise raised a fantastic £3,000.
“The cycle was extremely gruelling, with very hot weather conditions, but it was for a great cause,” says Denise. “The last day was amazing. The group of women I cycled with tied balloons to their helmets and bikes to ride through to Kisumu. This is a village on the shores of Lake Victoria where we were lucky enough to spot hippos basking in the shallow waters.”
“The Kenyan children would shout out a friendly ‘jambo’ or ‘hello’ as we passed; they were so excited to watch us cycling through their country. The scenery was a definite highlight. The rift valley and the tea plantations were spectacular,” Denise recalls.
Support Administrator Nicola is also an experienced fundraiser and ran the 5k Muddy Run last year. Her son soon followed in her footsteps, walking 12km with his school to help raise funds for Sue Ryder.
Nicola explains: “I have always supported Cancer Research as many friends and family have been affected by cancer. More personally, however, my mum was diagnosed with cervical cancer in May 2017 and unfortunately passed away from the disease. As a result, I wanted to raise awareness of the importance of cervical screening at all ages, so decided to do my part.”
This year, Denise and Nicola are joining forces to take on the Pretty Muddy 5k run. This is an obstacle course that will see them climb, crawl and slide their way to the finish line.
The obstacles range from giant climbing frames and inflatables to muddy cargo nets, tunnels and slides. Nicola’s already signed up for the event in the grounds of Burghley House, near Stamford, on 1 June. Denise is aiming for a similar event later this year.
“I’ve never really been a runner,” says Nicola, “but I’m determined to run the entire distance this year. I’m going to use the Couch to 5K training app, going out every day to build up stamina. I’d love to finish with a faster time this year!”
Denise adds: “My motivation is to raise money for this brilliant cause, and to have some fun too. I’m hoping it will inspire me to make healthy changes in my own life. I’ll definitely be training. Cycling is a great full body workout, and I’ll be sure to go on some long walks too.”
Retirement Line is committed to supporting worthwhile charities, groups, clubs and individuals. We are also proud of all our staff members who raise money for local causes. To read more about the projects we support, visit our Community Matters page.