If you see a group of fit-looking people walking strangely down State Highway 1 today – don’t be alarmed.
It is probably Snap Fitness Oamaru staff lunging their way from Topflite in the North End to Scotts Brewing Co.
The undertaking is part of the gym’s 28-day Mental Health Charity Challenge, a fundraising drive for mental health charity I Am Hope.
Snap Fitness Oamaru manager Andrew Allardice said the franchise had run similar campaigns in the past, raising more than $25,000 for mental health services.
He was hoping the gym would raise another $5000 this year through sponsorship and donations.
“It’s also raising awareness; it gets the word out there,” Mr Allardice said.
“If you are out and about, give us a toot.”
He estimated the 5km journey would take about three hours, and the participants would complete it in turns, one person lunging 50m or so before handing over to another.
The gym will run other fundraising events throughout October, including attempting to lift 1 million kilograms of various weights over the course of a day on October 23.
“We are quite passionate about how exercise can help your mental health,” Mr Allardice said.
“Do something for 30 minutes a day, even if it’s just a brisk walk in the fresh air.
“Find out what you like and just do it.”
New Zealand had one of the highest youth suicide rates in the world, something the staff at Snap Fitness Oamaru were passionate about changing.
“If you are going through something significant, go through it with someone else,” assistant manager Samantha Johnston said.
“You can be healing from sharing with others, it’s when it gets pent-up it’s worse.”