Crossing The Atlantic against all the odds!

Our annual Fitness Festival event exists to celebrate and inspire active and healthy lifestyles. We are proud that our event is free and accessible to everyone and we create a platform that enables us to introduce people to new activities, new sports and inspirational guests. And they don't come much more inspirational than Mark Gibson, Jon Lakin, Steve and Dan Baker - the Nuts Over The Atlantic team. We were delighted to welcome the guys to the 2017 Fitness Festival as they raised funds and awareness of their own challenge, rowing The Atlantic Ocean for The Movember Foundation. Back then, we learnt that more people have travelled into space or climbed Everest than have rowed The Atlantic and with good reason!

The team inspired the SWEAT community to join together to row overnight and non-stop a combined 48 hours in aid of The Movember Foundation back in November. We were overwhelmed by the support and effort from everyone and together we raised a significant of money for the charity. SWEAT regular Brian Beagan raised over £1,000 alone thanks to his awesome rowing and even better facial hair!

For the past two years, Mark, Jon, Steve and Dan have been planning and training in preparation for their immense challenge. The Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge is the premier event in ocean rowing. What's particularly remarkable is that none of the team had ever rowed in the open ocean prior to the challenge. The challenge sees teams from around the world rowing from La Gomera in the Canary Islands to Antigua in the Caribbean; glorious locations separated by more than 3,000 miles of unforgiving ocean.

Now safely in Antigua, no doubt enjoying the sunshine and success, Mark, Jon, Steve and Dan just rowed for 50 days in a boat that measured just seven by two metres with just a small cabin to provide any shelter from the storms. Unfortunately, the team's start was delayed after damage to the boat and that was just the start. Constant repairs must have tested their mental strength to the extreme whilst the physical demands of rowing coupled with sleep deprivation and salt sores are unimaginable.

We were delighted to hear from the guys as they neared dry land. Calling from a satellite phone, Mark expressed his deep gratitude at the SWEAT community's support and goodwill. We can't wait to see the team back at The Festival on Saturday 2nd June where they will be special guests giving a Talk and Q&A about their remarkable and life-changing achievement.

Well done guys! We're super proud to have met you and to have supported your efforts!

 Image courtesy of Ben Duffy and The Atlantic Campaigns

Image courtesy of Ben Duffy and The Atlantic Campaigns

LUKE NEWTON

SWEAT Southsea, 166 Haslemere Road, Southsea, England, PO4