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Posted: 22nd May 2023

A Peak A Week

Here at York Mind, we love hearing about the challenges people take on in order to raise money, and we wanted to share what Leon has challenged himself to throughout this year. Starting in April, Leon is dedicating his time to hiking across the UK and reaching his target of 52 peaks this year.

We spoke with Leon to see why he's taken on this challenge:

I've always been too proud to admit that I was struggling. I would worry about what people might say or think and be afraid of the worry I would put on family and friends if I did share my emotion. Instead, I'd put on the "everything's fine" face and settle to suffer in silence waiting for the better days to eventually role back in. However, before long, the weeks turned into months, the months then turned into 4 years, and now even to this day I am still dealing with the same personal situation, yet now I am dealing with it in a completely different and positive mindset! I no longer suffer in silence or feel claustrophobic in my own self! The last 6 months has been nothing short of complete freedom from stress, anxiety, and depression, and what was once a dream of feeling myself again, is now a reality!

All it took to begin the journey to mental freedom was to lace up my boots and start hiking! These hikes soon turned into personal challenges... how far could I actually hike, what weather could I battle through, could I do this in the dark?? I ended up doing all of these 1 weekend at a time, putting myself in challenging situations to strengthen my mind and overcome any elements and obstacles the great outdoors had to throw at me just as life did during the low times. 


So this is how I came to create the ultimate challenge A PEAK A WEEK. Climbing 1 mountain every week for 2023... It was only April when I put this together so have a little catching up to do squeezing extra climbs in between or doubling up like I have this weekend to ensure a total of 52 peaks before Christmas. I had already done 6 peaks this year, 1 of which being the highest in the UK.. Ben Nevis... 2 days after climbing Scafell Pike (the highest mountain in England).

I cannot recommend this natural remedy enough to help clear people's minds. I have never appreciated things this much before in my life, and have also come to know that I have been taking so many things for granted, especially my physical and mental health.

The freedom I've now discovered cannot be described in words, so this is why I want to inspire others to strap up their boots and get out so that they can experience the relief, satisfaction, and mental freedom just as I have.

You can support Leon here.

You can keep up to date with Leons hiking here.

As a local independent charity, here to support local people experiencing mental ill-health, fundraising like Leon's is vital for us to be able to continue to run our services here in York.

To find out how you could get involved in fundraising or supporting York Mind email our team or visit our fundraising support pages here.

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