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Meet Sol Turk – the man who braved a 100-day dip in the North Sea

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Despite the fact it was the height of winter, Sol Turk committed to plunging into the icy sea at Tynemouth beach every day for 100 days straight.

Inspired by Wim Hof – or better known as The Iceman – Sol embarked on a journey of self-care through cold water therapy and breathing exercises.

Beginning back in November, the former special forces officer recently completed the incredible challenge that changed his life.

Sol had been battling with his mental health, and after realising that going to the gym wasn’t a powerful enough tool to improve his state of mind, he decided to take a leaf out of Hof’s book.

He said: “It’s amazing. Changed me completely into a different person. Very positive. Happy. Open goal every day. Full of energy. More control in my life. And clear vision – no clouds, no negativity.”

Whatever the weather – regardless of if the North East was being hit with snow, rain or ferocious wind – Sol’s unwavering determination spurred him on.

His admirable will power convinced others to join him, as dozens flocked to the freezing waters of King Edward’s Bay on 26 February to celebrate his 100th dip.

The gathering has now turned into a regular occurrence, with folk repeatedly turning up at the beach to get involved in the cold-water exposure and relaxing breathing exercises.

The Facebook page ‘Sol’s Cold Water Therapy Group’ has racked up 1200 members in a matter of weeks.

Sol is even being stopped in the street with people eagerly asking if they can join in – which, of course, he says they are welcome too.

People from America, Australia, Asia and numerous other countries were also interested in experiencing the “magic” benefits that Sol has talked about.

Heart touching messages have since flooded in from across the globe with people expressing their appreciation to Sol for how his dedication encouraged them to begin morning dips.

Go here to visit Sol’s Cold Water Therapy facebook page.

Sol advised two minutes is enough “to charge your battery” alongside the right breathing exercises.

He said, although “it’s all in your mind,” that people shouldn’t force it.

He warned: “Your body will tell you how long you’re going to stay in the water. If your body tells you it’s enough, just get out.”

Sol’s main praise about cold water exposure is about how it makes your mind and body become one.

He explained: “You’re fully connected and just feeling good. It activates everything in your body – optimises your vascular system. And after that you feel good. When you come out of the water, you feel like a mountain.”

Marnie Merrilees, Mental Health Consultant at Thrive Mental Wellbeing, is working alongside Sol to spread the message about the benefits of cold water therapy.

She expressed that one of the “the greatest benefits” of cold water therapy is how it makes the body feel, especially as it can ease sore and aching muscles. Athletes often use cold water therapy to reduce inflammation and aid muscle recovery.

Marnie added: “Cold water can help your central nervous system by aiding in sleep, and consequently make you feel better from having less fatigue. It’s been suggested that people who engage in cold water therapy have better sleep, because it helps regulate their sleeping patterns.”

She noted that everyone within the group participating in the cold water therapy “seems to sleep like a log.”

She continued: “[A] benefit of cold water therapy is being able to train your vagus nerve, which is linked to the parasympathetic nervous system, which is the calming part of your nervous system. Training it can help you face stressful situations more adequately.

“Anxiety is a mental health condition that causes excessive fears and worries, and while intermittent bouts of anxiety are natural, anxiety disorders make it difficult to participate in life in a normal way. So when you want to get rid of your anxious thoughts, exposure to cold is a great way to relieve the anxiety symptoms naturally.”

Both with a passion for helping others, Sol and Marnie are keen for others to experience the wonders that they’ve both felt from cold water therapy and breathing exercises.

Sol Turk and Marnie Merrilees collecting Sol’s Koast radio award

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For those that aren’t feeling quite up to a dip in the sea, the pair suggested an ice bath could be a good compromise. Or alternatively, practice with cold showers.

Sol explained: “People actually train with cold showers before introducing themselves into ice baths, into the sea, lakes, waterfalls or anything like that. What they can do is turn the shower to cold. Try on the first day maybe for 30 seconds, the second day 40 seconds, third day 50 seconds. Each day increase it by 10 seconds.”

Motivated by how great it is see others thriving following his first challenge, Sol is about to start another one on Thursday (10 March) – although it will remain a secret until the big reveal.

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Are you brave enough to join him?

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Entertainment

Vicky Pattison left in tears before her praised Channel 4 documentary airs

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Vicky Pattison opened up on Instagram on Tuesday to reveal that she had been ‘crying in the toilets for hours’ after a press tour for her Channel 4 documentary on alcoholism left her ‘completely emotionally exhausted.

The Geordie Shore star confirmed last month that she would be releasing a documentary focusing on her father John’s battle with drink and addressing her own fears that she could follow his path, admitting that alcohol has already impacted stages of her career.

My Dad, Alcohol and Me aired on Tuesday at 10pm on Channel 4 and has already received widespread praise from viewers.

The promotional trial ahead of the documentary’s release saw Vicky appearing on shows like The One Show and This Morning, as well as in numerous magazines and newspapers.

Vicky is known for her honest social media presence, and on Tuesday posted a tearful selfie to Instagram with the following caption:

“Today got the better of me… 🥺

“I’ve spent the last month talking about things that I’ve kept bottled up for years- in the hopes that people will watch my documentary tonight and understand a little bit more about addiction and alcoholism. But I’d be lying if I said it hasn’t left me completely emotionally exhausted. Every interview I did I grew closer and closer to tears.

“I went and hid in the toilets at the BBC today and had a little cry after my chat- which I’d been threatening to do all day if I’m honest with myself 🥹”

She also shared that she hopes that the documentary is able to help even just one person feel less alone or bring one family closer together while bringing clarity and peace, and helping people understand what those struggling with addiction and those that love them have to face on a daily basis.

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Featured

How Tyneside sizzled during the four-month summer heatwave of 1976

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Looking back, according to the weather records, the summers of 2003, 1995, 1959, 1949 and 1915 were some of the true scorchers of the last 100 years or so.

But it was the blistering, seemingly endless summer of 1976 that will remain forever burned into the memory of anyone who lived through it.

The sun began shining in April and kept shining 45 years ago as the summer heatwave saw British temperatures nudging the mid 30s for months on end.

The heatwave kicked off in April and for week after week, the sun blazed in cloudless skies over Britain. Millions of us began flocking to the seaside and the countryside, and sunbathing in parks and back.

We also saw massive swarms of seven-spotted ladybirds landing in the country, a vivid memory for many.

But it wasn’t all sunshine and easy going, the extreme heat led to severe drought. The impact of the drought on water supplies led to water rationing, with rivers in parts of the country running dry.

The 1976 heatwave is understood to have also been the cause of 20% ‘excess deaths’ and there were significantly more hospital emergency admissions from 24 June to 8 July 1976 than for the same period in 1975 or 1974.

The heatwave and drought eventually came to an abrupt end when severe thunderstorms swept across the country, with September and October of 1976 bringing lots of rain.

Do you remember the blazing summer of ’76?

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City guides

Newcastle’s Summer ‘Screen on the Green’ Schedule Revealed!

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Newcastle’s free Screen on the Green film schedule has been revealed and it looks great for this summer!
Located on the outside green at Eldon Square (next to Nando’s, Pizza Express etc) the free movie summer spectacle will be running throughout the whole 6 weeks holidays, making it a perfect day out for the little ones. With no booking required, it’s a quick, easy and hassle-free day out for the whole family! Simply choose a movie and just turn up!
Here’s what will be on:
Monday 25th July
12pm Encanto
6pm Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again!
Tuesday 26th July
12pm Cars
6pm The Duke (12a)
Wednesday 27th July
12pm The Pacifier
6pm Free Guy
Thursday 28th July
12pm Cheaper By The Dozen (2003)
6pm Marley & Me
Friday 29th July
12pm Chicken Run
6pm Dune (2021)
Saturday 30th July
12pm The Boss Baby 2: Family Business
3pm Ghostbusters: Afterlife
Sunday 31st July
12pm Finding Nemo
3pm Goal!
Monday 1st August
12pm The Sound Of Music
6pm In The Heights
Tuesday 2nd August
12pm The Incredibles 2
6pm Night At The Museum
Wednesday 3rd August
12pm Soul
6pm The Dark Night Rises
Thursday 4th August
12pm Gnomeo & Juliet
6pm Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness
Friday 5th August
12pm Dolittle
6pm The Notebook (12a)
Saturday 6th August
12pm Tangled
3pm Eddie The Eagle
Sunday 7th August
12pm School Of Rock
3pm P.S. I Love You (12a)
Monday 8th August
12pm Mary Poppins Returns
6pm Les Misérables (2012)
Tuesday 9th August
12pm Paddington
6pm The Other Guys
Wednesday 10th August
12pm Monsters University
6pm Spider-Man: No Way Home
Thursday 11th August
12pm Ron’s Gone Wrong
6pm Crazy, Stupid, Love
Friday 12th August
12pm Matilda (1996)
6pm Mrs. Doubtfire (12a)
Saturday 13th August
12pm Sing 2
3pm Holes
Sunday 14th August
12pm Inside Out
3pm The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
Monday 15th August
12pm The Lion King (2019)
6pm La La Land (12a)
Tuesday 16th August
12pm Ralph Breaks The Internet
6pm Little Woman (2019)
Wednesday 17th August
12pm How To Train Your Dragon: Hidden World
6pm Black Widow
Thursday 18th August
12pm Robin Hood: The Rebellion
6pm Runaway Bride
Friday 19th August
12pm Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway
6pm Spencer
Saturday 20th August
12pm Wonder
3pm Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore (12a)
Sunday 21st August
12pm Shrek
3pm Forrest Gump
Monday 22nd August
12pm Hairspray (2007)
6pm Bohemian Rhapsody
Tuesday 23rd August
12pm Cool Runnings
6pm Belfast
Wednesday 24th August
12pm Sonic The Hedgehog 2
6pm The Mask
Thursday 25th August
12pm The Princess Diaries
6pm Central Intelligence
Friday 26th August
12pm Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
6pm King Richard
Saturday 27th August
12pm Frozen
3pm Mean Girls
Sunday 28th August
12pm Raya and the Last Dragon
3pm Cruella
Monday 29th August
12pm The Greatest Showman
6pm The Phantom of the Opera
Tuesday 30th August
12pm Spies in Disguise
6pm 17 Again
Wednesday 31st August
12pm The Secret Life of Pets 2
6pm Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
Thursday 1st September
12pm Moana
6pm The Lost City
Friday 2nd September
12pm Luca
6pm Uncharted (12a)
Saturday 3rd September
12pm Stardust (2007)
3pm Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (12a)
Sunday 4th September
12pm Clifford the Big Red Dog
3pm Death on the Nile (2022)
What movie takes your fancy?
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