As a type 1 diabetic, Melissa Appleby knows just how important it is to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
The St Helens Park resident is an ambassador for the Heart Foundation’s Gear Up Girl cycling event, which is being held next month.
The event is the largest all-female bike ride in Australia and will run from Sydney Olympic Park to Cronulla on March 11.
Ms Appleby said there were instances of early-age heart attacks in her family which made her hyper-aware of the need to stay active.
“We need to stay quite physically active to manage invisible illnesses,” she said.
“Women lead busy lives, especially when they’re mums, so exercise is often something we push to one side. But if we can find time for two hours a week the benefits are lifelong.”
Ms Appleby said Gear Up Girl was a great event because it was less “daunting” than other rides and there was no race element involved.
She encouraged women to get a team together and make a day of it.