Running for a reason, and a great cause

A general check-up at the doctors and an unexpected high blood pressure result was the turning point for Mark Hancock, and the inspiration for a new challenge.

This Men’s Health Week, being celebrated nationally from 11th to 17th June, Mark is encouraging all men to look out for themselves.

“I’m from the era where men don’t go to the doctor, and I think that needs to change from an early age,” he said.

Looking for a way to put his health back in top priority, Mark entered the half marathon distance at the upcoming Sunshine Coast Marathon.

“It started as a bit of a half joke. But then I started to think about it and thought ‘there’s something I can really push myself to achieve’,” he said.

Mark is no stranger to incorporating charity fundraising in his goals, and this year he has chosen to support the Sunshine Coast-based STEPS Charity.

“Every year I do a fundraiser for someone. I thought if I’m going to be doing a half-marathon I need to be fundraising at the same time,” he said.

“I’ve known about STEPS Charity for a while with all the work they do. I met Ange and was inspired by her passion and drive.”

STEPS Charity manager Angela Harrison said she was excited to join Mark and the other runners on the STEPS Charity Sunshine Coast Marathon team.

“This year I’ve entered to do the 10km race myself and have never run this distance ever before. The great part about this event is we can all be in the same team and enter whatever distance we want,” Angela said.

“Anyone is welcome to join our team. Whether you’re an experienced runner or not, I can say being a part of a team that’s fundraising for a worthwhile cause is so motivating and rewarding.

“All our STEPS Charity runners have pledged to help us fundraise to support young adults with a disability on the Coast,” she said.

STEPS Charity helps fund STEPS Pathways College, a unique education program that gives young adults with a disability the opportunity to learn skills to live independently.

To join the STEPS Charity Sunshine Coast Marathon team, select “STEPS Charity” as your team when registering at www.sunshinecoastmarathon.com.au/teams.

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