The Viva Energy team participating in last year's challenge.

Improving physical health for mental health

May 21, 2020 BY

Teams and individuals from across the region have committed themselves to executing 3,046 push ups this month to raise money for headspace Geelong via the “Push Up Challenge”.

Beginning on May 11 and finishing on May 31, the number of repetitions as part of the challenge represents the number of lives lost to suicide in Australia in 2018.

In 2019, close to 50,000 participants completed the Push Up Challenge, with people aged between 11 to 64-years-old signing up for the feat.

headspace Geelong operations manager Grant Gibson said this year participants could choose to fundraise directly for their local headspace centre.

“The Push Up Challenge highlights the devastating number of Australian lives lost to suicide each year.

“Our goal is to help reduce the number of Australian lives affected by suicide by increasing awareness of mental health in the community and raising money for headspace.

“Together we can make an impact, and improve the lives of young people in our community.”

David Braiden, environmental projects lead at Viva Energy, said this year was the third year the organisation had chosen to sign up for the challenge.

He said about 25 employees were taking part across three teams.

“We thought it was a good way to raise some awareness around mental health and also get people involved… a bit of team spirit, raise a bit of money for headspace.

“We thought it was good for this year particularly because there’s a lot of mental health issues at the moment with our current situation, and it’s a good way for people to connect a bit and do something different besides work.”

Push Up Challenge founder Nick Hudson said it was particularly important to check in on your loved ones and their mental health during these uncertain times.

“We are facing extraordinarily difficult times with the spread of coronavirus and mandated social isolation and now, more than ever, we believe in the power of online communities and the importance of keeping your mental health in check.”

For each day of the challenge, there will be a different number of push ups to complete, with each target indicative of a different statistic related to mental health in Australia.

The online tracker will also share daily wellbeing tips.

To find a team or individual to donate to, head to thepushupchallenge.com.au

To spread the word, hashtag #pushforbetter.

If you are struggling with your mental health, help is available. Phone Lifeline on 13 11 14 or head to headspace.org.au.