15 April 2021

Fitness group fundraise with 1,000-mile walk

Sandra Harnett, a fitness and lifestyle coach based in St Albans, has joined forces with seven other women to walk 1,334 miles, raising over £1,500 for Rennie Grove.

The walkers all belong to Sandra’s fitness and wellbeing group and this challenge is the latest of Sandra’s annual charity events. This year, with COVID-19 restrictions in mind, she needed to find a suitable activity that her group could take part in if they wished. That’s when the idea of the 1,000 mile walk was born, and the eight women committed to combining their mileage from February 1 until April 5.

Sandra Harnett Fitness Group

They decided to raise money for Rennie Grove as a number of members had connections with ​our services. Anne Hodge volunteers for ​us and other members have family and friends who’ve been supported ​by our services. “One of our walkers also has a very close friend who is currently being cared for,” said Sandra.

To reach their goal, each member had to walk an average of 14 miles per week. For those in the group with ageing four-legged friends, this often meant splitting the daily walk over two shorter routes.

Sandra is thrilled they’ve exceed their £1,000 goal. She said: “My purpose in life is to help women in mid-life and beyond lead a healthier and happier life through coaching, healthy eating and exercise. I’m so pleased that in doing so, this group can also make a difference to local families facing life-limiting illness.”

Sandra’s group began life in 2004 as a fitness and weight management club offering classes across St Albans, Harpenden and Hemel. Last March, Sandra moved everything online, scheduling two daily classes to keep her members motivated and connected.

Sandra said: “We had live daily sessions, mini coaching videos, virtual coffee mornings and quiz nights. Twelve months later, we’re still online, and previous members who’ve moved away have been able to re-join too.”

If Sandra’s story inspires you to raise money for Rennie Grove, you can get in contact with community@renniegrove.org for help setting up your fundraiser. You can also donate to Sandra’s fundraiser here.