Resilient STRIVING -Cycle Stage One

Our amazing Strivers have just completed Cycle Stage One of the Virgin STRIVE Challenge 2016. A huge 745km cycled, with over 6764m of elevation all the way from Rima San Giuesspe  to Argentario!


The hills of Northern Italy, provided the most beautiful scenery, but also the most challenging of tests for STRIVE 2016. The Tuscan countryside was both a physical and mental challenge; the hills took their tolls on their legs of the riders and the heat on their  mental resilience. The days were long (often up to 10 hours in the saddle) and the climbing relentless. It really was a challenge, and all struggled. But, this is what STRIVE is all about, pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, challenging your beliefs about what you are capable of, and fostering a resilient mindset that equips you to deal with the challenges we all face in life.


On the first morning of the ride Core Team member Sally Hughes crashed her bike riding in the peloton . Though not seriously injured, she suffered from pretty bad road rash and was suitably shaken. But, like a true Striver, Sally got back on her bike and showed real resilience and grit to keep riding with her team mates- determined never to give up. Check out an interview with Sally here…

The continuous riding also took its toll on the Strivers bodies. After a few days, most were exhausted and in pain. Luckily, we had the amazing Jigsaw Medical Team of physios and drs on board to fix all the Strivers aches and pains…


We also had Steve and John Bennet from Gemporia joining the Core Team for the stage, showing amazing STRIVE spirit from start to finish- thank you both for all of your support throughout the challenge!

But, our STRIVER of the stage and yellow jersey went to Tarun Goodimal. Six weeks before Tarun began the Virgin STRIVE Challenge, he couldn’t ride a bike. Even though he had been training hard in the gym, his road skills were still basic, so basic in fact that he was deemed unsafe to ride on STRIVE by the team. Tarun convinced the safety team to allow him a second chance, and after training every day for six weeks, he passed a final assessment clearing him to take part (only two days before he was due to start riding!) His incredible display of fortitude and resilience is an example for us all. Tarun embodies the growth mindset approach to life that we wish to inspire in young people: there are no fixed abilities, and we can make of ourselves what we wish.


Congratulations to all our amazing Strivers on completing Cycle Stage one of the Virgin STRIVE Challenge, and good luck to all the Core Team continuing on their adventure to Mount Etna.

#WeSTRIVE for Big Change

Photo Credits @adamslama