THE leaders of a Barry-based fitness group have prepared to electrocute and submerge their members in ice – to show just how far they’ve developed.
The Vale of Glamorgan 30+ Men’s fitness group will travel to Cirencester on August 16, with the Cardiff 30+ Men’s fitness group, for the gruelling 12-mile Tough Mudder challenge in which they hope to top the £13,000 they raised last year for local charities.
The challenge – where participants have to sign a disclaimer beforehand – involves fire, ice and electrocution as some of the obstacles that need negotiating.
The group, aged from 30 to 50 years of age and from all parts of the Vale, has trained at Whitmore Bay, Barry Island, and Porthkerry Park, in preparation for the event.
Hinterland actor, Alex Harries - the youngest member – is joined in the group by teachers, doctors, actors, council workers, driving instructors, car salesman, managing directors, IT professionals, a Doctor Who special effects expert – Nicholas Robatto – with a police officer also in the ranks.
The company is owned by Dafydd Stone, of Penarth - co-owner of a health and social care training company, Menter Training Ltd - and Mark Lloyd - a senior project manager for IBM.
Dafydd said: “Our overall aim is to help men over 30 in the Vale discover or rediscover fitness and health that they thought they could never have, or thought they had lost. We want them to feel more confident about themselves, feel better physically and psychologically, and lead and all-round healthier and positive lifestyle as a result.
“We use the power of the group to keep the lads accountable. We focus on teamwork and camaraderie, support and hard work, and the lads really respond well to this - and as a result they find the weight flying off them in no time at all.
“Tough Mudder is an extreme obstacle course. It's 12 miles of mud, sweat and tears. It's as much about facing psychological fears as it is about physical endurance. The event involves being submerged in a skip of ice water, getting electrocuted, scaling 12 foot high walls and confronting heights.
“Lloydy and I wanted the lads to do this for a variety of reasons - to show them how far they have with their fitness in such a short space of time. We've only been going since January, and prior to this the majority of our members hadn't been doing any fitness activities for years.
“It is of course an opportunity to raise money for charity and an opportunity for us to bond as a group, and reinforce the great camaraderie that makes us so special as a fitness group.
“Before you feel a mixture of great nerves and anxiety, mixed with adrenaline and sheer excitement at the challenge that lays ahead
"During the challenge, you feel breathless frequently. Shocked - in more ways than one - shocked from the electrocution challenges, and shocked for being submerged in a skip full of ice water.
Afterwards you feel nothing short of euphoric - adrenaline pumping, endorphines flowing and a great sense of pride and achievement.
For details and to sponsor the team , visit www.facebook.com/30PlusBootcampValeofGlamorgan. Alternatively, you can sponsor Daniel Maggs – running for SANDS the stillbirth and neonatal death charity in memory of Sebastian Smart. Visit https://www.justgiving.com/MaggsyRunningforSebastian