I have something to tell you guys.

I‰’m not proud of it though‰!

It‰’s hard for me to say out loud.

I have not exercised in two months‰! TWO MONTHS! It‰’s bad, especially considering my usual love of running and lifting weights. This weeks Fundraising Friday Star gave me the motivation to get back on the bandwagon and I‰’ve been working out all week this week, and I‰’ve never been happier (got to love those endorphins!)

As a firm lover of food I understand that sometimes it‰’s hard to get motivated, and sometimes you want to sit inside and eat, not go outside and run! However when it comes to expedition, you need to make sure you are physically fit. Something this weeks star Amy doesn‰’t even need telling about, she‰’s already got covered in mud whilst running!

Here‰’s what Amy sent me‰!

Since I signed up for the Ecuador expedition earlier this year, I have been constantly panicking at the thought of raising the total amount. Some of my friends at school had dropped out over the 6 weeks holiday, but that made me even more determined to raise money.

To begin my fundraising, I started off by doing a car wash for my teachers at school. 3 of my friends and I went around the friendly teachers at my school, and kindly asked them if they would like their car washed to help us raise money. We charged £5 per car, and even polished them for free! In total it raised £100!

Knowing I had to pay the deposit for the trip and the monthly instalments, I decided to use my hobby (cycling), to my advantage. I wrote to famous cyclists such as, Sir Chris Hoy, Mark Cavendish and Victoria Pendleton asking them if they would sign a piece of merchandise that I could then auction off to raise money. At present I am still waiting for a reply of Mark Cavendish and Victoria Pendleton, but Sir Chris Hoy agreed to sign his autobiography for me. All I had to do was send the book in the post and await its return!

I also started selling sweets at cycling events I attended. I have only just begun, but so far I have raised about £50 from it. All I did was purchase sweet bags from the Internet, and visited a local sweet shop! I did have to bargain my way into a good deal on sweets, but I did this by agreeing to place their business cards on the table for people to take. There are a lot of children at the cycling events, but I was unsure what they would like, so I asked the lady in the sweet shop what sold well and she happily advised me.

I also took part in the 5km mud run this October. As you can see in the picture below, the name of the event was true to life! (I’m the one on the floor in the mud!)

I asked people if they would like to sponsor me to help me to raise the money, and they were more than happy to help. As you can see, I did end up absolutely covered in mud, but it was worth every second!

Currently I am still collecting sponsorship money but have raised £45 from it in total.

TOP TIP FROM AMY: I find it doesn‰’t matter if you only raise a little bit from one event like I have, because they all add together to make a large amount. Pennies make pounds!

If Amy can run in the mud whilst fundraising, I can definitely get up and exercise after work! She definitely sent me her story at the right time, thanks for the motivation Amy!

If you are worried about getting fit for expedition, simply walk to and from school everyday, or just do something you love, like swimming or playing basketball! We do have a document with more information on how to get fit for your expedition though. Expeditions can be hard work, and that‰’s before you include any project work, so you will get a lot more out of your expedition simply by exercising 2-3 times a week. If I can do it, so can you!

(If you are trekking, you may need to take up some training 6 months prior to travelling, just a practice walk once or twice a week and gradually build up the distance!)

If you have any questions about expedition fitness, or any questions about your expedition in general, please give us a ring in the office! (01425 485390)

As ever, PLEASE send me your fundraising stories!!! I really love hearing what you are up to! What I look for when picking a Fundraising Friday Star is what you felt when you first heard about the expedition, a few paragraphs about what you have been up to so far for your fundraising, any future fundraising plans and some pictures of your fundraising! LOTS of pictures! (pleeeeeease) But the pictures do need to be of a high quality that can be uploaded online‰! no fuzzy mugshots! 😉

Email all entries to sophie.cohen@campsinternational.co.uk, I can‰Ûªt wait to hear from you all! 😀 Remember, every Fundraising Friday Star will win a FREE HEAD TORCH!