LISMORE — About 20 people gathered to take part in the ninth annual District One Fitness Challenge that officially kicked off on Sunday at the Lismore Hall.
Don Butler, one of the captains for the challenge teams, shared some remarks and vital information for those gathered for the official launch.
“We expect more than 100 people to be part of our team as we strive to accumulate 40,000 kilometres before the program winds up on February 11,” he said. “Our goal is to go to South Korea and back for the 2018 Winter Olympic Games.”
A variety of activities qualify for the challenge. They include walking, jogging, skating, team sports, knitting, rug hooking, exercise bikes, swimming, baking, school sports or any outdoor activities.
The challenge began as the Lismore and area’s answer to the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. It has grown and taken on a different dimension since then, Butler said.
“This is our ninth year and our goals changed quite a bit,” he said. “What started as a modest goal to accumulate 6,000 kilomtres — enough to get us to the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver — now sees us setting a goal of 40,000 kms to get us to South Korea and back for the 2018 Games. Our numbers have increased every year to where we have more than 100 people participating last year from every corner of District One. We are looking for even greater numbers this year.”
Butler said the province spends $107 million a year on the results of falls “since people are not as active as they should be.”
He said the challenge is a way for people to exercise indoors when the weather is inclement and get outdoors when it’s more suitable.
The challenge distances are tabulated periodically before the last one on February 11.
Last year’s total was 4,048 kms, while in 2015-16 it was 45,180 kms.
For aerobic activities — such as yoga, swimming, basketball and hockey — one hour equalled five kms.
Butler can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 902-926-2589.