The iron is now rested, the muscles not so much, but the aches are soon to diminish leaving nothing but memories of the epic event that was “Raising the Titanic”. Yes, long after that ship has sailed, the day will be remembered, a day when not only lifters, but regular everyday gym goers came together to give their all for Macmillan Cancer Support.
The event was well-scripted and excellently executed before the first lift had even left the platform. When I arrived, I personally had one goal in mind, yet the goal posts were soon to move continually throughout the day; 25 tonnes turned to 50 which turned to 54 by the final hour. This was due to the “give it all” atmosphere which swelled within the walls of the Olympic gym. This atmosphere was driven by two massive goals, one was to break the world record for amount deadlifted in 12 solid hours by 12 people, the other to lift as much weight as possible as a collective gym effort and “raise the titanic”.
Whilst the select 12 lifters had a mammoth task on their hands, each one showed their support to the masses in the back-room, who had come to join this powerlifting party. From 9am- 9pm there was not a bar left untouched, with a continuous flow of willing participants. This was not an exclusive event; lifters were of all shapes and sizes, newbies shared the platforms with World Champions, and even the powerlifting legend that is Andy Bolton came along to donate some deadlifts.
The “dirty” soon to become “delirious” dozen matched their target of 471,000kg with just under half of the day to spare but continued on relentlessly managing a massive 751,000kg as a collective. The numbers in the back room were growing and growing as each hour went by. As the grimaces grew determination prevailed and by the end of a painstaking 12 hours the gym reached an incredible 2, 560,700kg or 2560.7 tonnes; the equivalent of four and a half Airbus 380 aircrafts! Despite this, the event is not over yet with gyms across the country continuing to participate in this incredible feat all with one aim; to “Raise the Titanic!”
Although the lifters shared the majority of the limelight yesterday, this event would not have been possible without the assistance of a team of volunteers; with everything from food to sports massages on hand to support them through their endeavour. All proceeds generated were donated to MacMillan Cancer Support; £1300 was collected at the event alone with some help from the previous day’s visit to Imjin army barracks. Text donations were registered continually through persistent social media sharing and by the end of the day over £6000 had been raised, yet this is just the tip of the iceberg and more help is needed if we are to meet the £10,000 target.
All in all, the event has been a resounding success due to the efforts of all of those involved. Whilst the lifters including myself will be nursing a little more than an iron “hangover” today, the aches, pains and bruises are sure to be numbed by an overwhelming sense of achievement. Not only has it pushed the boundaries of lifting it has also raised both money and awareness for a very worthy cause. This is an event which will evoke memories of both pain and pride; “Raising the Titanic” has become a fundraising icon.
Donations can still be made by texting LIFT97 £3/£5 to 70070 or visiting https://www.justgiving.com/Raisingthetitanic