It ain’t weak to speak at this Perth running event, where fitness, fun and community are key.
After losing their best friend to suicide, two Aussie mates are breaking down the barriers around talking about mental health through education and community fitness events.
The second annual Livin Big Challenge running event is coming up March 19 and not only offers the chance to get your sweat on for 3.5, 7 or 10.5 kilometres, it’s also set to crush the stigma attached to talking about mental health. Co-Founders and CEOs Casey Lyons and Sam Webb started the Livin charity in 2013 after losing their best friend Dwayne Lally, who had been suffering a mental illness in silence. They recognised many people felt uncomfortable and embarrassed to speak about their suffering and decided to open communication channels through Livin, adopting the mantra ‘it ain’t weak to speak’.
The Perth running event combines the two main aspects of Livin, using physical activity to improve mental state and coming together in big numbers to create a sense of community where conversations can flow. “Studies have shown the link between exercise and the positive effects on your mental health, so we want to get people out there moving and getting those positive endorphins flowing,” Lyons says. “While people are running and feeling good, they’re also talking to people because they’re there for the same reason and they understand – it’s like one big group therapy session!”
With more than 100 people running at the inaugural event last year, Lyons says this year will be bigger and better. “The more the merrier,” Lyons says. “We want people to know we’re here to raise awareness, to educate and help people talk about the uncomfortable and that’s the topic of mental health and suicide. We want people to have a fun day that will make them feel good and enjoy that sense of community and belonging.”
Register for the run at www.lbc2017.eventbrite.com.au
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