Katie Bulmer-Cooke: Step up to the Sport Relief challenge

Fitness expert Katie Bulmer-Cooke.
Fitness expert Katie Bulmer-Cooke.
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If you are a regular reader of my column or follow me on social media, you’ll know I’m a fitness lover through and through, and it saddens me so much that as a city, region and a nation we are so much less active than ever before and have major issues with obesity.

We spend far too much time sitting on our bottoms, either at a desk or travelling in the car.

Related: Hop, skip and jump into Sunderland Sport Relief memories

Many people even struggle to hit the recommended 10,000 steps per day due to our sedentary lifestyles, which can have a very negative effect on our overall health.

With this in mind, I’ve been thrilled to see the launch of this year’s Sport Relief campaign to get the nation doing one billion steps.

This week the challenge is in full swing, with everyone being encouraged to download the free Sport Relief app to track their daily steps.

You can set yourself an individual challenge or join an existing team challenge, like the one I’ve set up called Step Up Sunderland.

I’ve set us the challenge of doing 200,000 steps as a city, and as a Sport Relief Regional Champion, I’m trying to get as many people to get involved as possible.

The great thing about this challenge is it’s totally free to take part in and all you have to do is ask friends, family and colleagues to sponsor you to get moving.

If you wear a fitness tracker like an Apple Watch or a FitBit, then you can link it to the app, but equally if you don’t have one, no sweat, just keep your phone in your pocket while you’re on the move and it will track your steps.

Sport Relief help a variety of projects, groups and charities in Sunderland, the UK and the world in so many ways, and this is an excellent opportunity to help out.

It’s a win, win situation. You move more, improve your health and fitness, and raise money for a brilliant charity that helps so many people.

Over the weekend me and some friends clocked up some extra steps by walking up and down Penshaw Hill.

It’s safe to say my legs are a little achey today, but it was absolutely worth it, as lots of people were kind enough to make a donation to my fundraising page.

It’s not too late to get involved, so if you’d like to take part, simply download the Sport Relief app, join the Step Up Sunderland Challenge and ask your nearest and dearest to sponsor you to become more active.

I’d love to hear from everyone who is getting up off the sofa and becoming more active, so please tweet me your activity achievements @KatieBulmer1 and use the hashtag #sportrelief.