(Pittsburgh, Pa.) - After graduating from Carnegie Mellon University in 2009 with a degree in Mechanical Engineering, Alex Timmons moved to Huntington Beach, Calif., only 40 minutes south of Los Angeles, to begin working on his fitness for charity platform.
Leaving Carnegie Mellon as one of the best golfers to come through the program, Timmons knew he wanted to continue combining fitness and philanthropy, something head golf Coach Rich Erdelyi always encouraged during his time on the team.
"As an athlete at CMU, I donated time to the local first-tee chapter and Coach Erdelyi was always proud of our team for doing that," Timmons said, "Coach Erdelyi always pushed us to combine our athletics and philanthropic ambitions."
Now co-founder, president, and CEO of Activist, a private organization founded in May 2013 that promotes personal fitness for charity, Timmons continues to combine his two passions for a great cause.
"The concept is simple," Timmons explained, "People can sign up for a fitness goal they have always wanted to accomplish or an organized fitness event they want to complete and use the platform to reach out and connect with their network (friends, family, coworkers) in order to gain support for their fitness initiative in the form of pledges."
The underlying premise of the company is similar to the door-to-door pledging people are accustomed to, but Activist takes an innovative, all-digital approach that allows anyone to do any activity, at any time, for any charity.
"Evolving into an all-digital space provides a lot of extra functionality that can help people become motivated to complete their fitness goals," Timmons said.
Timmons co-founded the company and is currently working with three other partners.
"We are all good friends," Timmons said, "We became partners because we are all passionate about getting people fit and healthy."
Working out is an easy concept, yet a lot of people lack the motivation to get up and do it. Activist is a company created for changing this mentality and motivating its participants to get out and get fit for a cause.
"The only way to trigger the pledges is to successfully complete the fitness goal," Timmons stated. "If you don't complete the challenge, the pledges don't count, therefore, it motivates people to work their hardest to complete their goals."
Timmons is currently collecting pledges for his present fitness initiative: two legs of an Ironman race being held October 5 and 6, which includes running 26.2 miles and biking more than 100 miles. With the pledges he has collected, Timmons plans to support the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
"One of my friends from high school passed away last year from Lymphoma," Timmons said, "It was a rough time and now I am trying to do something about it."
This will be Timmons' first goal with Activist to raise awareness of doing fitness for charity.
"I am extremely nervous about it, but luckily my girlfriend signed up for the same gaol so we have been training together" Timmons shared. "The goal I have chosen may be above my capabilities, but I want to push myself and make a difference."
The Ironman competition consists of three legs; running, biking, and swimming, but due to a torn labrum, Timmons is unable to compete in the swimming portion of the competition.
"I am having surgery on October 9, which is why I am only doing the first two legs," Timmons said. "I figured before I go into rehab and have to sit on the couch for a few months, I might as well go out with a bang."
He realizes that this is going to be a huge fitness challenge, but says he is ready to go.
"I have been slowly building up my running miles," Timmons said. "I found a marathon training regimen online and started small and then kept building up."
Timmons has never run a marathon or competed in an Ironman competition prior to this challenge.
"I have yet to run 26 miles in my training, but I am certainly going to go for it," Timmons said.
Timmons has found his motivation to complete the Ironman competition and now he and the rest of Team Activist are asking others, "What's your motivation?"
If you are interested in learning more about Activist or pledging to help Timmons reach his goal, please see the links below.
Fitness for Charity Home Page: http://www.teamactivist.org
Timmon's Ironman Challenge: http://www.teamactivist.org/g/1
A link to the Activist Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Team-Activist/539051446135553