Morning Mile March Challenge

events | walk

PTSD UK's Morning Mile March Challenge

PTSD UK's Morning Mile March Challenge

The challenge

We all know ‘exercise is good for you’, and even a small amount can make a big difference. There are a wide variety of health and wellbeing benefits associated with daily physical activity and an emerging body of evidence supports the positive impact even just one mile a day can have on mental health, which is why we’re launching our latest challenge – PTSD UK Morning Mile March!

It might not seem like a lot, but walking a mile every day can have some pretty powerful health impacts, so we’re encouraging all our supporters to walk at least one mile every day during the month of March to help their own mental health, and fundraise for PTSD UK!

You could run your way through this challenge, but don’t underestimate the power of plain old walking! Taking time to get moving and soak up some sunlight can completely transform your mood and emotional well-being.

PTSD UK's Morning Mile March Challenge

The details

Event TypeMorning Mile March
DateMarch 2024
LocationAnywhere!
Registration Fee£10
Fundraising TargetNo minimum
LevelModerate

PTSD UK's Morning Mile March Challenge

The benefits of walking one mile every day

  • You help strengthen your muscles Walking might not seem like a hardcore workout, but it’s actually a great way to get a little bit of strength training in. Every step you take engages all of the muscles in your lower body, and if you’re keeping your form in check, your arms and core will get a workout too! So don’t underestimate the power of a good walk, it just might surprise you!
  • You help boost bone and joint health Did you know that your bones love it when you get moving, especially when that movement involves some weight-bearing exercise like walking a mile a day? The National Institute of Health has shown that when you exercise, your bones respond and actually get stronger! So by making exercise, like a daily mile walk, a priority, you’re not only taking care of your bones now but also helping to prevent bone loss as you get older. “Because walking is low impact, it not only prevents joint damage but can actually ease joint pain,” certified personal trainer Sergio Pedemonte said. “Regular walks are particularly helpful for reducing knee, hip, and lower back pain in seniors, and even folks with arthritis.”
  • You set a healthy routine Walking is not just good for your body, but it’s also a fantastic way to treat yourself and get some much-needed fresh air. Whether you want to use the time for some self-reflection, enjoy your favorite tunes or catch up with a friend, walking provides the perfect opportunity. Plus, setting a goal of walking a mile a day can help you build consistency and establish a healthy routine. It’s a win-win situation!
  • You improve cardiorespiratory health You might be surprised to know that simply walking, whether it’s for a mile or any distance, can do wonders for your heart and overall cardiovascular health. Every time you move, your body has to work a little harder to pump blood, fluids, and everything else around, which is a big boost for both your body and brain.
  • Boost your mood We’ve all heard of endorphins: They’re like little happiness hormones that are released when we exercise. You don’t have to spend hours at the gym to feel their effects. Just ten minutes of exercise is all it takes to get those endorphins flowing and brighten up your day. Research has also shown that the stress hormones, adrenaline and cortisol (which are often elevated in people with PTSD and C-PTSD), tend to drop significantly after a nice, relaxing walk.

PTSD UK's Morning Mile March Challenge

How to get involved

Quite simply, walk or run at least 1 mile each day throughout March in addition to your usual routine.  If you need to substitute the one mile run for another exercise, anything is allowed, as long as it takes you a similar amount of time it would to run a mile (15-30 mins).

Entry to the challenge is just £10 and as our way of saying thank you for your support, every entrant will receive a free packet of bespoke PTSD UK Morning Mile March UK Native Wildflowers* seeds to sprinkle and watch thrive.

We are relying on the honour system for this challenge – there is no need to ‘prove’ to us that you completed each day’s walk – although we’d love to see your photos as you go!

PTSD UK's Morning Mile March Challenge

fundraising for ptsd uk

PTSD UK’s Morning Mile March Challenge is a great way to help raise awareness of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, PTSD UK and the work we do – plus, it’s an amazing way to fundraise to help support our mission.

There is no required minimum fundraising amount – simply raise as much as you can! How you raise and collect this money is up to you – you could set up a fundraising page on an online platform such as Facebook FundraisersGiveAsYouLive Donate, or Just GivingThey help you see your fundraising total, make it easy for your sponsors to add Gift Aid to their donations, and the money raised will get sent straight to us.

Alternatively, or in addition, if you’d like to raise funds offline we’ve got sponsorship forms which might be of use, or if you collect cash donations, you can find out how to pay them into us here.  

PTSD UK's Morning Mile March Challenge

Your Goodie Bag

Once you’re all signed up, we’ll be sending you out a goodie bag of PTSD UK merchandise (including a bespoke PTSD UK Morning Mile March UK Native Wildflowers seeds*) to help you shout loud and proud about the amazing thing you’re doing! 

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PTSD UK's Morning Mile March Challenge

How to avoid injury

It’s VITAL that if you’re taking part in this challenge, that your main priority is SAFETY. Please be sure to read and fully understand our T&Cs before starting this challenge and check with your GP before you begin if you’ve got any pre-existing medical conditions or symptoms which may affect your ability to take part.

Starting slow and steady is the key to avoiding pain and injury when getting back into a walking routine. Remember to listen to your body and take it at your own pace, especially if you’ve had a break due to injury or illness. And, don’t underestimate the importance of having the right footwear! Proper support is crucial for your feet, so make sure to invest in a good pair of trainers or shoes and replace them every 6 months (or as needed based on your frequency of walking).

It’s worth noting that if you go from being fairly sedentary to walking a full mile every day, you’ll probably feel it.

“You may feel sore because when muscles work harder than they are used to, low grade muscle damage can occur,” registered dietitian Conor McCrink noted. “This kick starts the repair process, but may cause something called delayed onset of muscle soreness for around 24 to 48 hours after exercise.” So if you find yourself in a bit of pain after day one, know that it’s totally normal, especially if you’re not used to regular exercise.

Any soreness should subside with adequate rest and recovery, but if it lasts any longer, contact your doctor or medical professional for advice.

Tips for Good Walking Form

To fully enjoy the benefits of exercise and prevent injuries, it’s important to maintain proper form while you move. By using the right muscles and keeping your posture in check, you can ensure a safe and effective workout.

  • Upper body form tips “A lot of people sit at a desk throughout the day, so their shoulders and their upper body end up getting really tight. Sometimes their posture can kind of stay like that. They get out for a walk, their shoulders get tight, their arms don’t swing as much,” says Steve Stonehouse, running and walking coach and director of education for STRIDE. Stay relaxed and let your arms swing naturally to keep your leg movements in check. Avoid crossing your arms too much or taking too big of steps to maintain proper form and prevent injuries. “Make sure that the arms are swinging, but I never want the arms crossing the midline of the body,” says Stonehouse.
  • Heel strike Keep an eye out for heel striking, as it’s important for both walkers and runners.  “A lot of times with runners. we’re really trying to decrease as much of the heel strike as possible. Ideally for a runner, you want to get a mid-foot strike,” says Stonehouse. For walkers, you want a “good heel strike on the outside of your heel. You’re going to naturally roll over to your midfoot and then off on your big toe. So ideally you want to keep that heel strike, mid-foot, big toe,” says Stonehouse.

Taking small steps by starting with a daily walk of just one mile can help you establish a regular workout routine and gradually improve your fitness level, allowing you to tackle longer and more intense exercises in the future.

You may start eagerly anticipating your daily one-mile walk!

PTSD UK's Morning Mile March Challenge

Terms and conditions

  • I acknowledge that PTSD UK Morning Mile March is a virtual fundraising event hosted by PTSD UK.
  • I understand that by signing up to participate with PTSD UK Morning Mile March I am pledging to fundraise for PTSD UK, but there is no minimum required fundraising amount.
  • I understand that the information I provide to register for PTSD UK Morning Mile March will be shared with PTSD UK and used by PTSD UK in accordance with their Privacy Policy.
  • I confirm that I am physically fit and in good health to safely take part in PTSD UK Morning Mile March
  • I can confirm that I have no known condition that would affect the ability to safely complete the challenge or would cause a risk of danger to myself or others.
  • I understand I am entirely responsible for selecting a safe time and location to walk/run.
  • I acknowledge that I am participating in this event at my own risk and that PTSD UK cannot be held liable for any injury, accident, loss, damage or public liability caused or sustained before, during, or after the event, as a result of my participation. In addition, PTSD UK cannot be held liable for any changes made to the event for safety reasons, or as otherwise planned through circumstances beyond their control.
  • I understand that I am solely responsible for my own safety and my own actions (including the safety of my possessions) whilst undertaking this challenge.
  • I understand that this event is only open to people over the age of 18.

PTSD UK's Morning Mile March Challenge

The Morning Mile March UK Native Wildflowers seeds

*In your Goodie bag will be a bespoke PTSD UK Morning Mile March Challenge seed packet of wildflower seeds, perfect for giving Nature a helping hand by sowing the seeds our native butterflies and bees need. Wildflowers encourage biodiversity and you can make your garden more biodiverse by sowing a patch of wildflowers, no matter how small.

Each paper seed packet is completely recycled (simply remove the sticker before recycling). The seeds inside are in a paper sachet (not foil and plastic). They are also grown in the UK and are native UK species.  If you are not using the seeds for a while, they are viable for a few years and are easy to store by keeping them somewhere cool and dry out of direct sunlight.

There are 15 species of wildflower in this mix, although not every packet may have all 15, due to seed distribution.  All of them are amazing for insects!  Seed content is as follows (please click each species to find out more information about them):

YarrowLesser KnapweedWild Carrot, Ladies Bedstraw, Rough Hawkbit, Ox-eye DaisyRibwort Plantain, Cowslip, Selfheal, Meadow Buttercup, Yellow Rattle, Sorrel, Salad Burnet, White Campion and Red Campion.

PTSD UK's Morning Mile March Challenge

How to sign up

Simply register for the PTSD UK Morning Mile March Challenge over on Eventbrite where we’ll get the £12 registration fee all set up and get all your details to send your goodie bag with UK Native Wildflower seed pack out to you.