July 16, 2019

The Snowdonia Challenge – Raising money for Porchlight

Romax employee Malcolm who participated in the Snowdonia Challenge shared with us what it was like. 

“Walking 100kms – over 3 days – it can’t be that difficult, it’s just walking after all?”

This was the response talking to some of my friends before, and after completing the 100kms in 3days Snowdonia Challenge.

They couldn’t be any further from the truth, I ran the London Marathon two years ago, and The Snowdonia Challenge easily left my body more destroyed than the marathon.

All smiles before the enormity of the challenge set in!

First day – 38 km

The first day was a 38 km walk taking Team Romax from Betws-y-Coed through the Gwydyr Forest to Llyn Elsi, Dolwyddelan and Capel Curig, with a total ascent of 1549 metres. Hands-down, hiking is one of the best ways to enjoy life – it’s awesome exercise, allows you to unplug, the scenery is unbeatable and, most of all, it gets you outside. Nothing beats a dirt-trodden trail surrounded by trees, mountains, wildflowers, rocks and all the stunning views your senses can handle.

Romax’s Hiep is wondering what he has let himself in for!

The first 2kms was a very rude awakening up steep forest hillside and continuing to rise and fall throughout the day. When you start on the first day, you think to yourself “ah well, at least after the steep hill there will be the walk down afterwards”. But by the second day, I can honestly say walking downhill was far more painful than walking uphill! It might seem like I’m not making sense, but the primary reason your knees hurt when hiking downhill is that they’re under significantly more stress than when heading uphill or on flat ground. As you descend one leg at a time, the leading knee is obliged to absorb the impact of not only your body weight but also the added forces of going downhill and the weight of whatever you’re packing!

Second day – 33 km

Our second day was a 33 km walk through the Ogwen Valley, enjoying some of the best Mountain Views in Snowdonia. Whilst this was probably the ‘easiest’ day out of the 3, with a lot fewer ascents and descents than Days 1 and 3, there were a lot of people walking around like characters from The Walking Dead that evening, all eagerly looking forward to day 3…!!!

Stunning views along the way.

Third day – 29 km

Our third and final day was a 29km walk through Gwydyr Forest and around 3 of Snowdonia’s beautiful hidden lakes. Geirionydd, Crafnant &Llyn y Parc. By now some of Team Romax were really suffering, as mentioned before, with walking downhill! It got so bad that different far fetched measures were used to make our descents – methods included: Jogging, walking backwards, skipping and even jogging left to right across the path! All aimed at taking the pressure off our completely shattered legs!!! And me, personally, chose to make things a little more difficult by getting lost just 5kms from home! I had missed an arrow and after a while came face to face with a sheer drop cliff… at this point I realised I was lost and had to backtrack, very carefully, to find the arrow I had missed!

But then eventually the finish line was in sight, we had done it, and the feeling of achievement was immense, with a medal and well-earned massage waiting for Team Romax as we crossed the line!

Robin and Margaret proudly show off their medals!

I personally would recommend this challenge to anyone who wants to know what it’s like to truly push yourself,

to find out how to push through pain barriers, to combat fatigue and feel massively rewarded afterwards.

Romax raised over £3500!

This challenge was also extra rewarding for us at Romax because we managed to raise over £3500 for Porchlight, a Homelessness charity working in Kent and the south-east. Fortunately, most of us will never know how it feels to be homeless, to have to sleep rough, to never know where your next meal is going to come from, to wear the same clothes you have worn for who knows how long. And that is just the tip of the iceberg.

Rough sleeping takes away hope and destroys lives. No-one should have to experience it yet, shockingly, rough sleeping in England has risen by 169% in the last seven years.

So no matter how difficult the staff at Romax found this challenge, it pales into insignificance compared to being homeless.

We would like to give a massive thanks to the generosity of those who sponsored us at Romax.

June 17, 2019

Alina is ready for Snowdonia challenge

This summer Romax employees will be participating in the Snowdonia challenge. This involves walking 100 km in 3 days. Each of our employees shared how they are preparing for the challenge and what they find the most difficult. Here Alina shares her thoughts about the Snowdonia challenge.

Who are you, how long have you worked for Romax, and what does your job entail?

My name is Alina, I’m the Marketing Manager at Romax, and I joined last August, so I have been here for almost a year now.

What made you volunteer for the Snowdonia Challenge 2019?

I’m a beautiful scenery hunter. I love taking pictures and am planning to take tons in Snowdonia, let’s hope it’s not going to rain.

How would you describe your current fitness levels?

I began attending a gym regularly around a year ago, I also started training for Snowdonia a couple of months ago, so people who know me say that I’m fit for the challenge.

How are you preparing for the challenge?

In the gym, I train my back and legs to prepare for the challenge. I also walk home from work 3 days a week. I started with just 6 km a day, and last week I began to walk all the way through the foot tunnel under The Thames river. That way takes me either 10 or 12 km, depending on which foot tunnel I take.

Have you ever taken part in any physical challenges before?

This is my first ever challenge. I’ve never attempted any challenges before. I haven’t ran any marathons, and here I go signing up for a two marathon distance challenge!

Do you have any concerns/fears facing the 100kms in 3 days challenge?

Not having experience in any other challenges actually makes me nervous. I’m not worried about walking 30 km in one day, I’m much more concerned about waking up the next day and walking the same number of kilometres again. I also hope that my anxiety won’t bother me, because if it will it might make the challenge extremely challenging for me.

Do you have any plans to help you get through the challenge?

I’m pleased that so many of my colleagues are joining me. I know for sure that they will support me through all the way, and knowing that helps my nerves. I have also read quite a few blog posts where people share their experiences from previous years of The Snowdonia Challenge. Reading tips from people who made it through is really useful.

Is there going to be a luxury/personal item you will be taking with you?

I will have everything possible that will make me walk more comfortably. I have two pairs of shoes – trainers and hiking boots. I have also purchased walking poles, hiking backpack and my favourite protein bars that taste like a Bounty bar. I’m thinking of different possible scenarios and keep ordering other things that will help me to go through it. Feeling that I’m prepared 100% will definitely lower my anxiety.

What do you think will help the most you to complete this challenge?

I think the combination of training that I’ve been through, reading tips from previous attendees and of course support from my colleagues will help me. Knowing that some of my colleagues have run marathons, conquered the 3 peak challenge and Iron man challenges makes me believe that I will definitely be able to do The Snowdonia challenge. But if not, I know for sure that I will hear Robin saying  “You can do it” and when people believe in you, you start believing in yourself too.

What is your favourite sports activity?

Cycling. I used to cycle a lot when I was a kid, and I still love it. My favourite saying was “Look, Mum, no hands.”

If you wish to support Alina’s walking challenge and help Porchlight to continue their fantastic work, please visit her fundraising page to donate: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/AlinaAgarkova

June 11, 2019

Malcolm is joining Snowdonia Challenge

This summer Romax employees will be participating in the Snowdonia challenge. This involves walking 100 km in 3 days.  Each of our employees shared how they are preparing for the challenge and what they find the most difficult. Here Malcolm shares his thoughts about the Snowdonia challenge.

Who are you, how long have you worked for Romax, and what does your job entail?

My name is Malcolm Saunders, I have been at Romax for four years. My job title is Document Setting and Print Operative, and my job responsibilities include Typesetting, Artworking, Design and Digital Printing.

What made you volunteer for the Snowdonia Challenge 2019?

Romax have done quite a bit of work for the Porchlight Charity, and I have read a lot about the hard and essential work they do, and this made me want to do something to help them.

How would you describe your current fitness levels?

I ran the London Marathon two years ago and am currently cycling into and home from work most days during the week, each day entailing a 30km return trip. So, I do consider myself as above average fitness level.

How are you preparing for the challenge?

As mentioned above, I’m cycling 30kms most weekdays, and I also have a seven-year-old Son, so this also keeps me pretty fit!!!

Have you ever taken part in any physical challenges before?

I have run the London Marathon, and many half Marathons too. Obviously, the full London Marathon was a challenge, but I trained well, and the day was very enjoyable!

Do you have any concerns/fears facing the 100kms in 3 days challenge?

My only concern that I under-estimate the challenge of walking this long distance three days on the trot, especially considering myself to be pretty fit!

Do you have any plans to help you get through the challenge?

I’m sure the landscape is going to be pretty breath-taking, which is always going to help. And I’ll be taking my earphones – with my Music subscription!

Is there going to be a luxury/personal item you will be taking with you?

My luxury item will be my earphones I suppose, and earplugs to make sure I sleep well!

What do you think will help the most you to complete this challenge?

I’m sure the team from Romax will be fun to walk with, possibly get to know a bit better spending so much time together, this will be important, I think.

What is your favourite sports activity?

I love football, Liverpool being my team, and I’m also an avid Formula One fan…hold on…there’s a race that weekend…DOH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

If you wish to support Malcolm’s walking challenge and help Porchlight to continue their fantastic work, please visit his fundraising page to donate: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/MalcolmSaunders5

June 6, 2019

Robin’s next challenge in Snowdonia

This summer Romax employees will be participating in the Snowdonia challenge. This involves walking 100 km in 3 days.  Each of our employees shared how they are preparing for the challenge and what they find the most difficult. Here Robin shares his thoughts about the Snowdonia challenge.

Who are you, how long have you worked for Romax, and what does your job entail?

Robin Sumner, Managing Director, 22 Years.

What made you volunteer for the Snowdonia Challenge 2019?

Sadly – an increasing number of people on the street in modern society is fundamentally wrong, so we need to address this.

How would you describe your current fitness levels?

Slightly above average for my age!

How are you preparing for the challenge?

Walk, Swim, Cycle and Eat!

Have you ever taken part in any physical challenges before?

YES – 3 peaks/ Channel Swim/ Charity Bike Rides/ Arctic Ice Man Challenge.

Do you have any concerns/fears facing the 100kms in 3 days challenge?

Not worried.

Do you have any plans to help you get through the challenge?

Simply enjoying the walk and company in beautiful surroundings.

Is there going to be a luxury/personal item you will be taking with you?

Margaret’s coming with me… – Romax’s HR and Health and Safety Director and Robin’s wife. .

What do you think will help the most you to complete this challenge?

Plenty of food and good conversation.

What is your favourite sports activity?

Swimming.

If you wish to support Robin’s walking challenge and help Porchlight to continue their fantastic work, please visit his fundraising page to donate: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/RobinSumner

May 27, 2019

Romax will conquer Snowdonia

A team of 9 Romax employees will be pushing it to the limits this summer by participating in the Snowdonia Challenge. This involves walking 100 km in 3 days. We will start the challenge on 28 June walking through the Snowdonian mountains and forests. AND because it’s there, we are going to climb Snowdon on the fourth day too! All with the aim of raising money for our charity – Porchlight.

Snowdonia Challenge will be a test of physical and mental strength and team working that will take us on a journey of self-discovery.

The journey

On 28 June, in the first day of the challenge, we will walk 36 km through the forest tracks up to Llan Elsi and towards the foot of the Moelwyns and Capel Curig. On the second day, we will take the course to the Afon Llugwy along the Ogwen Valley with some of the best views Snowdonia has to offer. The planned distance will be 35 km.

And on 30 June, the last day of the challenge we will approach the distance of 29 km and go up as high as 2000m. The track will head off to the north of the village and into the Gwydyr Forest to enjoy the stunning views around Llyn Gierionydd, Llyn Crafnant and Llyn y Parc.

The team is currently training and walking as much as they can. However, not everything depends on training. Weather conditions can vary, and we may face extremes of weather. Blisters will be a problem no matter what and exhaustion will play a big part. Each team member understands the possibility that we may not all complete the challenge. But we intend it approach it together and support each other on the journey.

Fundraising for Porchlight

At Romax, we believe in supporting our community. And this year we on the way to raising our target of £5000 for Porchlight. The charity helps people in our community by providing homeless people with food and homes and preventing people from becoming homeless.

Just last year Porchlight responded to 16942 calls from people in need! 79% of found people on the streets of Kent were helped to move off the streets. 439 People received support in the housing project, and 95 people have found paid employment. We are proud to support Porchlight’s work, so those in need get the help they deserve.

If you wish to help Porchlight to continue their fantastic work, please visit our fundraising page to donate: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fund/Romax-for-Porchlight