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Lockdown and winter challenges

Lockdown and winter taking it’s toll? Take up these challenges to improve your wellbeing!

Don’t let lockdown get you down! 

With lockdown upon us, many people will be apprehensive about being confined to four walls again, and especially the isolation and loneliness that goes with itThis, coupled with the dark nights and the probability that Christmas is likely to be extremely tough this year will take a toll on many people’s mental health 

But what if you could take part in a challenge that will help combat those feelings and make lockdown a positive experience for yourself? Even better, you can help to support those who are struggling with their mental health? 

Help yourself and help others. 

‘Step Up is a new challenge created by local entrepreneurs Ty Temel and Benjamin Banks-Reynolds along with fitness coach Jamie Whisken. The goal is to complete 1 million steps between now and December 21st You can either attempt it alone, or team up with friends and family to help keep each other motivated and add up the step count together!  

You can use the hashtag #StepUpChallenge to share your progress and see how others are getting on.  This will also help you feel more connected to the ‘outside world’ during the 4-week lockdown. Be mindful not to compare your success to others though, as this can have a detrimental effect on your motivation. This is a personal challenge, and everyone will be completing in different ways and at different rates. If you’re stepping forward, whatever the pace, then you’re winning! Whether that’s completing the million steps as an already established fitness fanatic or joining forces with your friends and doing the steps accumulatively! 

Will YOU step up to the challenge?

By taking part in the Step Up Challenge you will be help to reduce the chance of depression and lower your stress levels by being activeThey are encouraging people to take part not only for the benefit of their own mental health during this tough time, but also to fundraise for Dorset Mind so that by looking after yourself, you are also looking after the wellbeing of others.  

Goal setting is a good way to keep you feeling motivated in life. With the 21st December just over 3 weeks away, it is a good amount of time to set achievable goals in. Not too long that you lose momentum, and not too short that you won’t have a chance to set goals 

Click HERE to follow the Million Steps fundraising progress on Just Giving, set up your own fundraising page and start Stepping Up to the challenge throughout lockdown and beyond!  

Move Your Mind and keep up the good work to stay mentally healthy! 

Fast forward a few weeks after you’ve completed the Step-Up challenge, felt great about your accomplishments and got through the Christmas period – how will you feel? January is a bit of an anti-climax month at the best of times. This year the January blues are set to hit harder given the restrictions people will face seeing loved ones over the festive periodWe understand this, and don’t want you to get to January and find your wellness levels drop. That’s why we’ve created Move Your Mind to continue that momentum of getting active and importantly, it will help keep you mentally healthy 

Tell me more!

It’s simple; 30 mins of being active for each day of January. This can be anything you like – walking, running or cycling or any other activity that gets you moving that you’re able to safely take part in. Upon signing up you will receive the following:  

  • A guide to setting up your online fundraising page (target £31) 
  • Top Tips for getting active, this includes activity ideas along with nutrition, recovery and health & safety tips 
  • A calendar to plan your month of activities and record your daily achievements 
  • A weekly wellbeing tracker for you to see how your active minutes are affecting your mental health 
  • Access to our private Strava club and Facebook community group. There you can share your story, progress and to help encourage other participants 
  • A money box to collect extra donations 
  • Sponsorship form (we can claim gift aid (an extra 25%) on any cash donations received from UK tax payers) 
  • Special incentives 

Whilst registering is FREE, we recommend you set an individual target of £31. This achievable amount could help us deliver weekly counselling safely for a child in Dorset. 

Sign up here and start the year being active and becoming physically and mentally healthier! 

How these challenges can become your 5 ways to wellbeing. 

Being active is just one of the 5 ways to wellbeing but by taking part in both challenges, you can incorporate the other 4 listed below, and really help to improve your overall wellbeing. 


Something that will seem a struggle during lockdown, but if you sign up for the Step Up challenge with a friend, this will give you something positive to talk about and will encourage regular contact. 

The Move Your Mind Facebook community group and Strava will also provide a place to chat with others who are also taking part in the challenge. You will be able to share your progress, swap tips and have a place to go if you’re having a bad day and need some extra encouragement!  

Take Notice

We’re allowed 1 hours exercise each day for lockdown, but this doesn’t mean we have to stop exploring! Why not use this opportunity walk down that footpath you’ve often wondered where it leads to? Or try a new running route recommended by a friend? Give yourself new environments to be in. This will help you to take notice of your surroundings as you discover new places.  


Read our Top Tips that will be posted throughout the coming months to learn more about activity ideas, nutrition and health and how these affect your mental health. 


This could either be monetary by giving your own donation or reaching out to friends and family to sponsor you for taking part in the challenges. You could also give time to help your friends achieve their own goals for the challenges. Perhaps you could make a weekly zoom meeting to see how you’re both getting on, and look at the areas you both need to improve on and support each other? 

Change doesn’t have to be a bad thing. 

Those who thrive on routine may be dreading the change to their usual daily activities over the coming monthshowever, one must remember the words of Darwin – ‘It is not the strongest of the species that survives, not the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change’.  

Although it will be hard to establish a daily routine whilst the restrictions of what we can or can’t do are uncertain, it doesn’t mean you can’t create one. In a world where we seem to be increasingly out of control, one thing we can be in charge of is our activity routine 

Therefore, join us on our journey through these tough next few monthstake control of your own wellbeing, create a new kind of normalget active and make YOU a priority! 

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