New Routes for Step Up Challenge
28 February 2021
By Hayley Carmichael
Our annual Step Up Challenge has had a face-lift to help us feel better in 2021.
What's new about the Step Up Challenge?
For the past three years we have run the Step Up Challenge across three NHS Trusts, and after the pressures of 2020, we felt the time was right to refresh the challenge to give people a positive reason to get involved.
The basics of the challenge remain the same. There are three virtual routes to choose from and you have 12 weeks to walk enough miles to complete your chosen route from your start date.
The challenge starts first week in March and is open until the end of April, so you can choose a start date anytime between those dates.
For 2021 we have three brilliant new routes for you…
The Bones Route: a virtual adventure along the Jurassic Coast on foot covering 95 miles of ancient coastline. The area was the inspiration for the writer of Broadchurch and the writer Thomas Hardy.
The Fairytale Route: take a walk from Dover Castle to the Little Mermaid in Copenhagen, a route of 1050 miles that takes you to the home of Hans Christian Anderson, one of the most well-known fairy-tale writers in history.
The Frontier Route: a virtual adventure along the Appalachian Trail on foot. Travel writer Bill Bryson famously covered the Appalachian Trail in his bestselling book A Walk in the Woods. It is the longest hiking-only trail in the world at 2100 miles.
It's about more than taking a walk
This year, as well promoting walking which is so incredibly brilliant for health in mind and body we are building in some other factors.
So every route is linked to a writer, and we’ll encourage you to relax with a good read after you’ve had a good walk to help recharge mind and body.
We’ll also be posting weekly blogs throughout March and April with recipe ideas linked to the locations you’ll visit along the routes. The recipes will look at seasonal ingredients and veggie options to keep our food inspiration as healthy and sustainable as possible.
Plus for the first time, we are linking in with Trust charities so you can use your Step Up Challenge as an opportunity to fundraise.
To take part in Step Up Challenge 2021 all you need to do is email firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, chosen route and start date and you will be sent a challenge pack which includes a chart to capture all your weekly miles towards your final destination.
If you are forming a team (and you can do it remotely as a team with one person to co-ordinate the group miles each week onto the chart if for social distancing reasons you can’t get together to walk) then just let us know in the email the names for each team member.
Happy walking! (Also if walking is tricky for you, we welcome people taking part by cycling or wheelchair to ensure the challenge is more accessible for everyone.)