This is the story of how I took the radical step of deciding to raise money for Age UK by signing up for a half Ironman.

I’ve only recently joined the team here at Redwood Consulting, and so far I’ve had an absolutely amazing time. From working across some amazing accounts with great, smart, positive, and generally upstanding people, to attending the company’s wonderful 25th anniversary party. But one of the qualities that has really impressed me at Redwood since I’ve been here, is just how charitable the people here really are.

Seeing PJ run a 25km run across London to raise money for LandAid made me reflect that I could be doing considerably more to give something back to the community. With this in mind I volunteered to join the Redwood team taking part in the LandAid 10km race in June. But I also wanted to do something on my own initiative. So, having never raised money by myself for a cause before, I’ve decided to take inspiration from my colleagues and start my own charity drive.

My awesome grandmother recently turned 100, and it seemed appropriate to pick Age UK as my charity of choice to try and raise money for – it is the country’s largest charity dedicated to helping everyone make the most of later life. Today, there are more people aged 60 or above in the UK than ever before, and it’s the fastest-growing group in society. As we get older we face new challenges, illnesses, loneliness or poverty, but that shouldn’t stop us being ourselves, being able to laugh, love and feel needed. Age UK helps over-60s stay independent and keep doing the things they love while living a fulfilling later life.

So on 23rd September I’ll be limbering up on the beaches of Weymouth to take on my first-ever half-Ironman for the cause. What possessed me to sign up for a six-hour competition of non-stop swimming, cycling, and running? Honestly, I’m not entirely sure, but while I’m at it I intend to raise as much money as I can for a good cause.

Let me finish this piece by giving a shout-out to all of my generous colleagues: Harriet, Isabel, Freddie, Nick, and Tom for completing Vertical Rush; Charles for quitting smoking and raising money for Cancer Research UK; the members of the team who took part in LandAid’s Sleepout; Tara baking cakes for REACT Children’s Charity; and all of the other members of the team for their contributions and generosity.

I’ve only just launched my JustGiving page, but you can find it here, and I would be very grateful for any donations.