Cycle Your Way: Virtual Cycle the Seacoast Provides Flexibility
Learn how you can participate in the American Lung Association’s 12th annual Cycle the Seacoast event
Looking for a great way to explore the outdoors while supporting lung health research?
The American Lung Association’s 12th annual Cycle the Seacoast fundraising ride has been reimagined as a virtual event. Cycle the Seacoast is happening now through June 30, 2021 and is open to participants from across the world.
Profits raised from Cycle the Seacoast support public health efforts related to lung disease, including COVID-19 research. Funds benefit both national and local initiatives such as the Open Airways program, which helps teach elementary school children how to better manage their asthma.
In 2020 the Cycle the Seacoast event went virtual only a month prior to what was supposed to be event day due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, for this year’s event, they had time and experience on their side. Some of the aspects of the virtual event will carry over even when Cycle the Seacoast is back in person as well.
One of the advantages of the ride being virtual this year is the accessibility for anyone who wants to participate, no matter where in the world they live. Everyone that registers for the event will have access to various fundraising tools and are able to earn incentives and prizes throughout the event.
The 2020 event, despite unexpected obstacles, was incredibly successful and raised $80,000. The fundraising goal for this year is $100,000. Since 2010, the annual event has raised almost $1 million for the American Lung Association.
The American Lung Association has committed $25 million over the next three years for their COVID-19 Action Initiative. This initiative will help provide lung health education and masks to those in need, protect public health by advocating for COVID-19 and flu vaccines in underserved communities of color and invest in respiratory virus research to prevent future outbreaks.
Interested in participating? Visit the Cycle the Seacoast event website to register and find more information. There are options to register as an individual, find a team or begin one. Choose the “Cycle Your Way” option and use the discount code “NHMAG” for $10 off registration. From there, you will receive everything you need to successfully participate in the virtual event.
Cyclists can complete 25, 50 or 100 miles of riding, either on an indoor bike, outdoor bike or mix of both. The pace is self-directed as well, and participants can complete the challenge in segments if desired. These mileage goals are intended to be completed by June 30, but there is no mandatory mileage requirement.
One reason to participate is to “just to be part of something bigger than yourself,” says Melissa Walden, development manager for Cycle the Seacoast and the American Lung Association. “A lot of people feel a little bit helpless in these times. Seeing all these people get out and ride in support of lung health will help you get motivated and have a sense of community.”
Walden says one of the biggest challenges with a virtual event is creating the mindset for participants that Cycle the Seacoast can still be fun and interactive despite the absence of an in-person ride.
All virtual participants that reach the minimum fundraising amount of $200, or $100 for participants aged 17 or younger, by June 30, 2021 will receive a medal and T-shirt. There are more incentives available when participants raise beyond the required amount, including an awesome cycling jersey.
As mentioned above, cyclists can choose any path, trail or road to complete the event. Starting in April, the event organizers will provide some sample route options throughout New Hampshire, Maine and Massachusetts, including the original in-person routes starting and ending at Cisco Brewers Portsmouth.
The American Lung Association will offer weekly challenges and giveaways beginning in mid-April. There are a variety of ways to connect with fellow participants and event organizers via social media. Download the free Cycle for Air phone app for easy fundraising, challenges and GPS recording, link your own GPS device to the Cycle for Air app and/or the Cycle the Seacoast Strava club, or join the Facebook group to stay in touch with participants around the world.
Feel free to reach out to event manager Melissa Walden with questions via email or phone: email@example.com / (207) 624-0306.
New Hampshire Magazine is a proud sponsor of this event.