Fifers’ double-sided fitness challenge

Cyclists in East Fife Youth Academy's 'Tour de Fife'.
Cyclists in East Fife Youth Academy's 'Tour de Fife'.

Spring was in the air on Sunday – and in the steps of some committed exercise enthusiasts who took to the streets on two wheels and two feet.

A bunch of open-air devotees were tackling East Fife Youth Academy’s 2015 community health venture.

Walking enthusiasts who took part in East Fife Youth Academy half marathon

Walking enthusiasts who took part in East Fife Youth Academy half marathon

The fitness and wellbeing project was in two sections – one a 43-mile bike ride known as the ‘Tour de Fife’ and the other a 13-mile half marathon.

Both events began simultaneously at Bayview and continued throughout a slightly chilly but mercifully dry afternoon.

As well as encouraging people in the community to be active and improve their health, while enjoying the benefits of exercising with friends, the venture was also intended to raise funds for East Fife Youth Academy (EFYA).

The group, which seeks to provide health-conscious meaningful activity for young people, through football schools and training sessions, hoped to gather money for new equipment and to broaden its holiday programme and range of activities available to the youngsters, while developing its community profile, as well as helping the ladies’ and girls’ footballs squads at East Fife.

The journey took around six hours - everyone came through it okay

EFYA head Lorna McAuley

The cycle riders saddled up for a run to all of Fife’s senior football stadiums – they left Bayview and headed for Stark’s Park in Kirkcaldy, home of Raith Rovers, then on to Dunfermline Athletic’s venue at East End Park, followed by a trip to Central Park in Cowdenbeath and then back to Bayview.

The journey took around six hours, said EFYA head Lorna McAuley, and everyone came through it okay – although one or two riders were plagued a bit with cramp and the odd puncture was suffered as well.

A group of women also set off on a half-marathon around Levenmouth and also out to Lundin Links and Largo, as far as the Crusoe Hotel.

A number of the ladies took it at a sedate pace but one or two ran virtually the whole way.

Lorna said there had been a great deal of enthusiasm shown in training for the events and EFYA was keen to accept all the support it could get, to enhance what it could offer.

Future EFYA events included football sessions at Bayview for people aged over 35, along with a FFIT – Fife Fans in Training – series of sessions exclusively for women, to complement a current course just for men. There would also be a sportsmen’s dinner in May, added Lorna.