HOME STRETCH: The final ten minutes of a gruelling 24 hour ride (Photo: Tristan Evert)
HOME STRETCH: The final ten minutes of a gruelling 24 hour ride (Photo: Tristan Evert)

24 hour spinathon for mental health awareness

IN AN emotional affair, Kingaroy local Dayna Pukallus has completed a 24 hour bike ride raising awareness for mental health at the Conquer Fitness Gym this morning.

The ride begun at 11am yesterday and with the support of family and friends, Pukallus said she was so proud of her achievements.

"The reason I decide to ride for 24 hours is because mental illness doesn't sleep and can strike at any moment," Pukallus said.

"I am absolutely shattered," she said.

"The longest bout of cardio I had ever done before is five hours so this was a massive step up for me."

 

PROUD MOMENT: An exhausted but proud Dayna Pukallus as the clock strikes 24 hours (Photo: Tristan Evert)
PROUD MOMENT: An exhausted but proud Dayna Pukallus as the clock strikes 24 hours (Photo: Tristan Evert)

Pukallus has battled mental illness in the past and said spreading awareness has become her passion.

"A couple of years ago I was suffering from binge eating, anxiety and depression and was just beating my self up mentally and it was exhausting," Pukallus said.

"In year 11 I was 126kg and I remember having a moment where I realised I need to love myself for who I am otherwise nothing will change," she said.

"Over the past two years I have been training hard and eating well and spreading awareness has become something I am really passionate about."

 

MOTIVATION: Mental illness can strike at any time and comes in many different forms (Photo: Tristan Evert)
MOTIVATION: Mental illness can strike at any time and comes in many different forms (Photo: Tristan Evert)

Mental illness is often misunderstood and mistreated in society according to Pukallus who said it's just as important to check on you're friends as it is for them to reach out.

"It's important for people with a mental health issue to reach out, however it's so important that they know they have people around them in support," Pukallus said.

"Sometimes it is as simple as asking if someone is ok," she said.

"Knowing you have people supporting you is something that really helps."

Mother, Erica Pukallus said she has shown so much determination over the past two years.

"This 24 hour spinathon is her way of raising awareness for mental health and letting people know that it can happen at any time," Pukallus said.

"She actually only told me about a week ago," she said.

"Holding the tears back was hard, I am super proud of her, she is a great kid."

If you or anyone you know needs help, contact Lifeline on 13 14 44.

 

FAMILY PHOTO: The Pukallus family proud of Dayna's achievements (Photo: Tristan Evert)
FAMILY PHOTO: The Pukallus family proud of Dayna's achievements (Photo: Tristan Evert)
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