Living

A fitness trend that's truly inspiring

Get inspired by this group of runners who are combining fitness with good deeds.

Running down the middle of the street

Photo, Masterfile.

If you lack motivation to get your daily allotment of exercise in then you may want to consider attaching greater significance to your 20-minute jog than simply losing weight or getting into a one-piece minus the sarong. In fact, maybe you may want to dedicate the effort to someone who really needs a boost in your surrounding community.

That’s precisely what one UK group has decided to do by turning a daily run into a means of offering much needed community support to the loneliest population, reports The Guardian.

Goodgym is a running group based in London, England that pairs runners with “isolated less-mobile people in their area,” primarily seniors on their own. Called “coaches”, the seniors are living breathing reasons for runners to get up and out.

Here’s how it works: runners that sign up for the group (it’s free to join, though a small donation is suggested) commit to at least one run a week in which they jog to a lonely or isolated senior’s house, “deliver something nice, have a brief chat and are on their way again,” explains the website.

See a short video of how the experience has affected two runners and their coaches below.

As the video suggests, the pay-off is far greater than simply burning calories or staying active. Both the runner and the person being visited benefit physically, emotionally and psychologically. The runner gets the necessary motivation to lace up after work, or on the weekend and the senior receiving a visit gets a necessary gesture of support and compassion.

An even more wonderful benefit to the heart: friendships are formed too. Now to get started in our