Lewis Robling

Running Head On at 5x250km Ultra Marathons for Big Moose

Fundraising for bigmoose
£15,873
raised of £25,000 target
by 539 supporters
Donations cannot currently be made to this page
project 1 million
Campaign by bigmoose (RCN 1179222)
bigmoose is on a mission to raise £1,000,000. all money raised will be invested into therapy, early and timely intervention. the goal is to help people with their mental health, prevent suicide and reduce homelessness.

Story

  • In December 2020, I learned that you can't run away from your mental health no matter how hard you try.
  • I had therapy for the first time and Bigmoose funded 4 sessions for me that helped me take control of my life.
  • My goal for 2022 is to speak up for mental health, to push myself beyond perceived physical and mental limits and inspire others to do the same.
  • I'm running head on into 5 x 250km ultra marathons in 8 months.
  • I need your help - I set out to raise an ambitious £25k for the charity, this will fund approximately 250 hours of life changing therapy.
  • This isn't going to be easy, but together, I believe we can achieve anything we set our minds to. Thank you. 

Full story: Running, Head On

"Behind the smile is everything you'll never understand."

I had my first bit of therapy in December 2020, only a few months after the high of running my first ultramarathon.

I never thought I would be in a position where I needed to speak to a therapist, you just don’t think it's going to happen to you.

As a young adult, I was under the impression that to be ‘strong’ I had to avoid showing any emotion, any signs of weakness… to ‘man up’. It was part of the culture as a young professional rugby player. Ironically, saying nothing, being ‘strong’ and suppressing those emotions was the easy way out…

For whatever reason, there is a set of negative attitudes, pre-judgements, prejudices and behaviours that make it harder for us with mental health problems to live a normal life - I say us, because mental health applies to everyone, no matter who you are or where you come from. Males in particular are being subjected to a culture where the idea of masculinity is literally killing us. This is why it is absolutely vital to normalise speaking up and asking for help. As people, we need to remind each other that it’s ok to be vulnerable, to show emotion.. we need to remind each other than our greatest ‘weakness’ can be turned into our greatest strength.

So why after achieving something incredible, finishing a 125km ultra marathon in the Peak District with only 4 weeks to train, did I feel so low? I went out and pushed way beyond limits I thought I had and succeeded, I proved to myself that I was worthy, I was capable and learned countless life lessons in the process. It was the most profound experience of my life to date. And so, why did I still feel like I wasn’t enough, why was my sense of self worth still so low - even with friends, family, strangers congratulating me, praising me, calling me inspirational? And then it clicked… 

The most powerful lesson of all I learned a few weeks/months after completing the ultra…

You can’t run away from your mental health, no matter how hard you try - facing it head on, running towards it was and is the only way to understand and learn to overcome it. 

This is where Bigmoose comes in….

I had never considered therapy as an option. My outdated, backwards idea of therapy meant that you had to be seriously ill to need it - you had to have hit rock bottom. 

One way to think about it is to compare it to tidying your house, or your bedroom. The longer you leave it until you clean up, the bigger the problem becomes, the more time it will take to put the clothes away, your clothes start to smell, they start to mould… before you know it the job is so big that you just can’t find the time to sort it out! Now this might not seem too serious, but imagine doing this with your mental health.. you suppress those feelings over and over again, all of a sudden they are so overwhelming that you lose control. Losing control with your mental health is outright dangerous - and we wonder why thousands of people take their own lives every year?

Now, I had a catch up conversation with Chloe, one of the Bigmoose founders, who is an incredible human being and she noticed something wasn’t quite right. I’m not sure what I said to make her feel that way, but she picked up on something and gently mentioned that ‘Graeme (one of the counsellors that Bigmoose work with) is always there if you need him’. I already knew who Graeme was as I’d seen him speak at a Mental Health talk that Bigmoose hosted, Steph spoke at it too. My first reaction was just as expected, ‘No, no I’m good. I just need to do ‘X’ and I’ll be alright. Don’t worry about me.’ I completely phobbed it off. In fact, I was actually embarrassed that I gave off that vibe of ‘weakness’, it was so unlike me - I thought. Fast forward a few weeks post conversation, I had tried to make changes and ‘shake off’ the uncomfortable feelings but nothing seemed to change. And so around 4 weeks later, I found the courage to ask Chloe if I could speak to Graeme, she of course said ‘yes, absolutely’ and Bigmoose funded four therapy sessions for me, just like that. It had such a profound impact on me and I was able to take control and turn my life around at that time.

Now that I’m in a better place, I am learning to deal with these uncomfortable feelings when they arise - I have a toolbox of techniques that I can use to come back to the present moment and make a plan to move forward, but there are still times when it becomes overwhelming. This is where I’ve learnt to ask for help and book in regular sessions with Graeme. I actively seek therapy to better understand who I am - I want to be able to make better decisions with a deep understanding of why they occur. This understanding empowers me. I am a better person for it. I am a better person to everyone around me - family, friends, loved ones. 

I am not afraid to tell someone that I seek regular therapy.

In fact, we should encourage and help one another to find the strength to face our mental health head on, talk openly about it, be inspired by and inspire others to share their stories so that we can fight to overcome this stigma together - to save lives.

This could be a text message as simple as - ‘Here if you need it mate.’

If you yourself, or someone you know is struggling, Bigmoose has access to an incredible network of counsellors that they work with and pay for to help anyone and everyone - no matter who you are or where you are in the world. 

Just like they helped me, help is there for YOU.


WHY am I raising £25,000 for Bigmoose?

I am trying to raise 250 hours of counselling to help people that are struggling with their mental health for whatever reason, with the ultimate goal -  SAVE LIVES

£25,000 equates to around 250 hours of counselling. 

That has the potential to save 250 lives. 

HOW am I going to do it?

I’m running, head on into the unknown - into discomfort, into challenge to overcome physical and mental adversity, to discover what I’m truly capable of, to learn how to manage my mind, to move forward and evolve, one step at a time. 

By choosing to expose myself to such extreme discomfort, I am choosing to learn how to overcome them. When similar feelings of discomfort arise in everyday life, they'll arise with a sense of familiarity - because I've seen them before. I'll know what to do to move forward, one step at a time. 

WHAT am I doing?

I’m running 5 x 250km multistage ultramarathons in 8 months in some of the toughest climates around the world. With a total of 1250km of racing, over 34,000m of elevation and temperatures that will soar over 40 degrees. To make things tougher, the time between each race reduces as we move throughout the 8 months with only 3 weeks between the last two races - the last race being the toughest of the lot! 

Race Schedule:

- 22/3/22, Sri Lanka 250

- 4/6/22, Slovenia 250

- 7/8/22, Wales 250

- 3/10/22, Jordan 250

- 5/11/22, Mexico 250 

The races are part of the Ultra X Race Series - they are phenomenal. I’m extremely grateful to the team at Ultra X for allowing me to use these races as a vehicle to raise money and saves lives. 

If any of you are reading this inspired to push past and beyond your own perceived limits, to learn about who you really are and to join me for one of the races, please reach out! 

I learned more about who I was in 2 days in the Peak District than I had done in 10 years as a Professional Rugby Player. 

Anyway, thank you so much for reading this far, I appreciate you taking the time and hopefully leaving a small donation.

At the very least, I would encourage you to head over to the Bigmoose website to read about their story and to understand where the money will go - https://www.bigmoosecoffeecompany.co/

For those of you interested in maybe joining me, click here - https://ultra-x.co/

Finally if you’d like to get in touch with me about anything else, feel free to send a message on my instagram @lewis_robling.


“At the end it’s not about what you have or even what you’ve accomplished. It’s about who you’ve lifted up, who you’ve made better. It’s about what you’ve given back.” Denzel Washington




BIGMOOSE:

during lockdown we were providing therapy for lots of people and were told by five people that without our intervention they would have ended their lives.due to early and impactful intervention 5 people were still alive. 5 families weren't grieving and the world still had these amazing humans in it. we listened to people's stories & one thing that we kept hearing was that the therapy & intervention that people needed was taking too long and was inaccessible for so many. and so, just like that, project 1 million was born. throughout 2022 we are aiming to raise £1,000,000 which will be used to provide therapy and early intervention for people.this is a huge goal and we cannot do it alone. our goal is to help people with their mental health, prevent suicide and reduce homelessness. we will achieve our goal and we will save lives. in 2020, 5224 people killed themselves in england and wales. this project will help to reduce this number. we hope you will join us.

About the campaign

bigmoose is on a mission to raise £1,000,000. all money raised will be invested into therapy, early and timely intervention. the goal is to help people with their mental health, prevent suicide and reduce homelessness.

About the charity

bigmoose

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RCN 1179222
Created via charity sign up service.

Donation summary

Total raised
£15,872.44
+ £2,912.94 Gift Aid
Online donations
£14,652.31
Offline donations
£1,220.13

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