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Tablers to row the Atlantic for mental health

Round Table members to row in record breaking challenge for Heads Together

Tablers, Toby Gould and Jeremy Reynolds, are set to embark on a world record breaking attempt to become the fastest mixed four to row the Atlantic east to west. Along with two crew mates, team Heads Together and Row, will row 3,000 miles unsupported from the Canaries to Antigua in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge – the world’s toughest rowing race.

Skipper Toby explained the challenge they face: “Each of us will row two hours on, two hours off for, we hope, fewer than the current world record of 56 days.  We will face extreme sleep deprivation, blisters, saltwater sores, seasickness, 40ft waves, 40C heat and hurricane strength winds. When not rowing we will be surviving in a cramped cabin no bigger than a one man tent, cooking, eating, making our own drinking water from the sea and maintaining the boat and equipment. We will take everything we need and leave nothing behind us at sea.”

Jeremy put the scale of the challenge into context: “Having spent seven years in the British Army, my body’s catalogue of residual aches and pains can attest to arduous trials in the past! I am, or at least was, comfortable with being uncomfortable; cold, wet, tired and hungry. However, I expect this challenge to be on a new scale, with no respite until we reach dry land – I’m hoping that my body can sustain one more trial.”

The challenge is so extreme that more people have summited Everest or been into space! So why are they doing it? Toby explained: “From the start the four of us knew this had to be about more than just personal challenge and adventure. We view this as much a mental challenge as a physical one. Tied to that belief, our mission is to help people talk more openly about their mental health.”

The crew are rowing in support of the Heads Together campaign spearheaded by The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry to end stigma surrounding mental health and change the conversation on mental health and well-being. The crew are fundraising for two charities under the Heads Together umbrella – Mind and Combat Stress. Toby explained: “We chose the combination of civilian and military mental health charities reflecting our differing backgrounds and experiences of mental health. We are all passionate about the overriding message of the Heads Together campaign that mental health should be more openly discussed and accepted.”

Would you like to find out more about ocean rowing? The crew would be happy to talk to other Tablers keen to take on an ocean adventure of their own. They are also looking for support to help raise vital funds for the challenge. Follow them on TwitterFacebook or email headstogetherandrow@gmail.com to invite them along to a fellowship night to explain more.

Every year Round Table members raise over £3million for fantastic charities and brilliant local causes, just like Heads Together, whilst taking part in amazing unique events and activities. Want to find out more about Round Table? Click here 

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If you would like to speak to someone or feel you may need support visit the Heads Together website for more information on confidential helplines. 

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