May 18th, 2024

LPS officer’s challenge puts mental health issues in the spotlight


By Lethbridge Herald on October 7, 2021.

Herald photo by Al Beeber LPS Constable Terry Fieguth demonstrates his pull-up technique to media. Fieguth is mounting a 24-hour pull-up challenge Saturday to bring awareness to, and raise funds for, the mental struggles of first responders.

Al Beeber
Lethbridge Herald
abeeber@lethbridgeherald.com

Terry Fieguth has challenged himself to bring awareness to the mental health of police and first responders.

Starting tomorrow, the Lethbridge Police Service constable and canine handler will be mounting a 24-hour challenge to do as many pull-ups as he can in that timeframe.

The challenge, which is also to raise funds for the Lethbridge chapter of Legacy Place Society, starts at 10 a.m. and ends on Sunday at 10 a.m.

Fieguth’s goal is to do 100 pull-ups every 10 minutes followed by five-minute breaks until he finally calls it a day.

His goal is to do 4,030, which was the world mark set in 2013 by American David Goggins, a former NAVY Seal, he told media this week. 

But if Fieguth wants to set a new world mark, he’ll have to do more than 4,100 since Goggins’ record was just beaten on Sept. 7. by someone named Truett Hanes who was challenged by Goggins to beat his record.

Whether he sets a record or not, Fieguth will be putting mental health issues in the spotlight.

He started training in March after fulfilling a personal challenge in 2020 to run 250 kilometres in a month to raise money for the Special Olympics.

Fieguth, who told media in the LPS workout room that he isn’t a runner, managed to accomplish that goal.

“I was able to do that and I raised money for Special Olympics. This year in March I started doing a lot of pull-ups and I thought to myself I’m going to see how many I can do in a month. I ended up beating my goal for that, kind of surprising myself and that time I thought this is a challenging feat.”

He looked up Goggins’ feat and decided to try beating his record.

For the last seven months, he’s been training for Saturday’s endeavour and has done 124,000 pull-ups in that time, working out twice daily.

Police chief Shahin Mehdizadeh said “I’m really proud of him for actually coming up with this initiative. It’s not something he was told to do, he’s just doing it on his own.

“Why is mental health important for first responders? Obviously, the answer to that question is very easy. We need to be in a good mental health to be able to serve the community. We need to be in good mental health to do our job” and to be good parents and family members, the chief said.

“What I hope to accomplish from all this is just bring an awareness of mental health, not only to responders but to everybody. It’s more prevalent and I think an issue than ever. We’ve all dealt with a lot, everybody over the last two years. When you compile those issues on top of a job that requires you to have physical and mentally challenging tasks on a daily basis, it’s a huge struggle. And I just want to bring awareness to that for first responders and let them know they’re not alone. It’s OK not to be OK and there’s help out there,” said Fieguth.

A tax receipt is available for people who donate. They can do so at https:www.facebook.com/donate/220297013361459/

The challenge will be live-streamed on Facebook.

“The reason I chose this time frame is Oct. 10 is World Mental Health Awareness Day,” a fitting day to end his challenge, Fieguth said.

“Obviously I have some goals coming in I’d like to meet. But at the end of the day, it’s just a challenge for me to mentally persevere through and to challenge myself.”

Follow @albeebHerald on Twitter.

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