A one-hour spin class just wasn’t enough for Maltby fitness instructor Gavin Levitt, who persuaded gym members and colleagues to get on their bikes for up to 12 hours in support of Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice.
Raising £1065 for the charity that cares for over 250 children and young adults with life-shortening conditions, the epic ‘spinathon’ at Bannatynes gym in Rotherham saw gym members do their cycling best for at least one or two hours, with 11 members completing the whole 12 hours.
Gavin (39) who lives in Haslam Place, Maltby, presented the spinathon for the entire time, with colleagues Nikki Denff, Jason White, Karen Sinclair, Jack Walker and Phil Watt and gym member Georgina Hampshire helping to motivate participants during the marathon session.
Gavin said: “I have seen how hard Bluebell Wood works to provide such a dedicated, caring service for their families and I wanted to assist in whatever way I could. The spinathon went really well and I seemed to be very lucky that I got my preparation spot on. Everyone who set out to do 12 hours achieved it, although I think there may have been a few sore bottoms by the time they finished.”
Gym member Neil said: “Everyone was more than willing to step up and do their bit, especially for a cause as worthwhile as Bluebell Wood. I’d do it again in a heartbeat as this was like nothing I’ve done before. I did the last two hours and the atmosphere was excellent, with everyone boosting each other on. Gavin is a great motivator and well known for his spin classes with disco lights and music.”
Raising money for South Yorkshire’s only children’s hospice is one part of a huge challenge that Gavin is taking on, as this August will see him undertake the 20Twenty Challenge for Bluebell Wood and other charities. Gavin and his friend Shaun Gash are planning to travel self-propelled in wheelchairs from Lands End to John O’Groats in under 20 days to set a new Guinness World Record.
Gavin said: “We’ve already been pledged £5,000 for Bluebell Wood by a local business so we’re off to a great start. I’d like to invite other businesses that want to take on a challenge and help us raise even more to give me a shout.”
Anna Gott, Community Fundraiser at Bluebell Wood, said: “We’d like to thank Gavin, the Bannatynes team and all the gym members who went well above and beyond their normal exercise routines to raise this money for Bluebell Wood. This will really help us to support families facing the toughest of times and help them to create some unforgettable memories together. We wish Gavin and Shaun all the best in their 20Twenty Challenge and can’t wait to hear how they get on later this year.”