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Cardiff University colleagues walk one million steps for Diabetes UK Cymru

Colleagues from Cardiff University’s School of Social Sciences (SOCSI) teamed up to take on our One Million Step Challenge this summer.


Head of School Tom Hall, lecturer Sophie Hallett, researcher Sophie Bartlett and centre manager Elaine Russ took up the challenge due to their friends and family members’ experience of living with diabetes. Sophie Hallett and Sophie Bartlett’s fathers both have Type 2 diabetes and Tom’s daughter has Type 1 diabetes.

They each committed to walking at least 10,000 steps a day from 1 July until 30 September.

A team commitment


Elaine (pictured) said, “None of us have to look far to find someone affected by diabetes. I liked the idea of an ongoing challenge that would encourage us to make changes to our daily lives.”

Tom said, “My daughter, Georgie, was diagnosed with Type 1 when she was three. She is now 15 and manages her insulin and blood sugar readings. Taking responsibility for her condition has been part of growing up. I’m so proud of how well she is managing. I like a challenge and One Million Steps seemed great to get involved in and support others like Georgie.”

Stepping it up

To keep each other motivated, the team set up a WhatsApp group and checked in with their step counts each evening. It didn’t take long to notice the benefits of being more active each day.

Elaine continued, “I’m walking to and from work and getting up from my desk much more regularly. I had to find excuses to get out walking at weekends to make sure I reached the total. I feel much more energetic and more relaxed by the time I get home.”

Sophie Bartlett agreed: “I’ve enjoyed not using my car as much and walking more has helped with stress. Having a desk-based job means I don’t usually get many steps in so I’ve had to go out of my way to do them. It’s been a real wake-up call!”

Tom Hall and Sophie Hallett were the first to reach the one million step mark, with Sophie Bartlett and Elaine not far behind. To top it all off, their efforts have raised over £900!

Elaine said, “Having the support of the team was vital. I would never have done it by myself! I’ve wanted to increase my fitness for a while and have enjoyed it much more knowing I was supporting a great cause too.”

Thanks so much to Team SOCSI for taking on the challenge! There’s still time to sponsor the team.

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