Bristol school mates walk Clifton Suspension Bridge for 24-hours in aid of Movember

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A duo from Bristol have undertaken a 24-hour walking challenge across Clifton Suspension Bridge.

Jacob Dimery and Matt Green, who have been friends since school, are no strangers to physical challenges and this one is no exception.

Their epic walkathon began at 8am yesterday morning (30 November) and will finish today at 8am - they've been taking timed breaks of 10 minutes.

Inspired by their own experiences of mental health struggles, Jacob and Matt are raising money for Movember - an annual event involving the growing of moustaches to raise awareness about men's health issues.

Jacob and Matt started setting themselves trials three years go, partly as an incentive to keep themselves active during lockdown and help their own mental wellbeing.

Jacob even chose to wear Crocs for the 24 hour walking challenge Credit: ITV West Country

The friends decided to put themselves to the test again this year, with an activity demanding a huge amount of psychological grit.

Initially, their idea was to try to walk 100,000 steps in a day. But that quickly developed into a plan to walk for 24 hours because, as Matt said: “If you're doing something for 16 hours, you might as well do it for 24 hours.”

"There’s plenty of research that shows being physically active helps support your mental wellbeing, but there's a misconception that it has to be excessive exercise.

"It can just be a walk and a talk.”

Matt agreed: “It's easier to speak to someone when you're looking ahead and not really concentrating; you're just talking into the stratosphere, and the information just floods out.”

Jacob and Matt are former school friends from Bristol Credit: Jacob Dimery & Matt Green

Both Jacob and Matt said they have had experiences with mental health struggles which has driven them to try and help others.

Jacob sadly lost a friend to mental illness nine years ago and has used his endurance tests to raise money in honour of his memory.

Speaking about the passing of his friend, Jacob said: “His wellbeing was not in a great position, and I look back on it and think, if we were maybe able to impact him in some sort of way or maybe get him out to be more active, that could have maybe even changed the circumstance he was in at the time.”

Movember is a charity that is also close to Matt's heart as he’s had his own battles with mental wellness in the past.

Matt said that setting himself demanding challenges has been a great focus: “I’ve kept doing it because it does help, remembering the adversity I've been through before; it helps you keep pushing on."

The pair have set a fundraising page with a target of £2,880. Jacob explained the significance of this figure: “Every minute, a man commits suicide. There are 1,440 minutes in a day, and as we’re doing this challenge together, that’s 2,880 minutes, £2,880.”

Matt added: "We have no issue with having difficult challenges, and we’re quite grateful that both of us are in a pretty decent place in terms of our own mental and physical wellbeing.

"We both have very supportive good structures around us. It's just time to give back, we’ve only got one life to live, and I’d rather try and give back to the community in some way, and if it creates awareness, it's the least we can do."