16th May 2024

Chelsea’s Jurassic Coast Challenge 

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Along with her best friends Cassie and Jasmin, Chelsea Richards took on the incredible challenge of completing the 100km Jurassic Coast walk in 2023. And if that wasn’t enough, they completed the challenge using weights (raising £1450 along the way)!

Originally opting to take on the 50km challenge, the trio wanted to challenge themselves further and eventually settled on the 100km challenge! Raising money for Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation, Chelsea completed the walk in memory of her mum, who was diagnosed with lung cancer on the 27th of May 2022. Only 10 days after her diagnosis, she passed away from the disease.

Taking place over two days with little to no sleep, Chelsea tells us about how the girls powered through to complete this massive achievement and her experience with her mum’s late diagnosis of lung cancer.

“Getting to the end of the 100km was something I never thought I was going to achieve… Once I got to the end I was just so oblivious to the fact we had completed it as we survived on 2 nights of no sleep and my friends even started hallucinating!

“The initial plan was made in November 2023 and we decided to make the JustGiving page and get the word spread for donations or support from everyone we know. 

“I chose this fundraising activity because I had done a similar challenge when I was deployed in Oman in 2020, I walked continuously for 24 hours (61 miles). When we were deciding what activity to complete, I mentioned walking and, as Cassie is from Bournemouth, the Jurassic Coast challenge seemed the perfect fit for a challenge of 100km with weights.”

The challenge

“When the time came, on February 10th 2023 at 22:30, we set off from Swanage and headed to Bridport. The first night of hills was incredibly difficult and by morning I was in a lot of pain from a previous injury which was preventing me from walking fast enough. 

“Mentally, I was trying to tell myself not to give up and to just slow down… That the pain and hurt were nothing compared to what my Mum had to endure. For me, it was only temporary.”

“We got to the halfway point past Durdle Door and met my husband and sister at a pub where they had drinks and food waiting for us – a pint of Cola and a burger most definitely hit the spot and motivated us to get to the end!

“By 04:00 on the Sunday morning we had no choice but to lie down at an alcove of bushes and cuddle up to each other for a 20-minute power nap to get us to the end. As dawn approached and we were getting closer to Bridport, we were so happy it was the end! We found so much motivation and energy and we practically power walked the rest of the way and made it to the end at 08:15 on the Sunday morning welcomed by family, work colleagues and friends.”

Why she chose to fundraise for Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation

“I chose this charity as they aim to help and support individuals with any type and stage of lung cancer. I know that if I had longer with my mum, we would have reached out for support. However that wasn’t the case, so I didn’t get to use their support and help until after my mum had passed away.”

“I would do it all over again in a heartbeat… I would just train better beforehand!”