RUGBY UNITED NEW YORK ATHLETES REFLECT ON MOVEMBER EXPERIENCES
By Kiera Fitzgibbon
Alex, Anthony, Connor and Dylan spent their November growing some impressive MOs for Bros for Movember. Along with thousands of people worldwide, the guys raised donations and awareness of men’s mental, emotional and physical health in their community in the hopes to change the way society views and talks about men’s health.
We’ve tracked their ‘stache growth on our social media pages (with a full gallery at the end of this article!) and they’ve raised $1,175 thanks to all the supporters!
Looking back on their Movember experiences, the guys share how it’s affected the way they take care of their health, advice they have for people wanting to get involved in Movember and how it all relates to their professional rugby career.
What do you think of your ‘stache? How is it compared to the other boys’ ‘staches?
Alex: Well, there isn’t much of one there. 3 days without shaving my cheeks and it looks like I have a beard again! But I stayed true and kept the ‘stache fairly for a month, and needless to say I probably won’t be rocking it solo ever again. Forgive me, Tom Selleck.
Anthony: I have a pretty strong ‘stache. Definitely the most defined and proper mustache out of the boys.
Dylan: A tidy Mo! One of the best for sure.
Connor: I enjoyed my handlebar ‘stache but let the rest grow in! I think it’s pretty strong compared to the boys!
How did you feel overall about being a part of this campaign?
Alex: I really enjoyed being a part of Movember. I had never done it before and had always wanted to, so I was glad some teammates decided it was the right thing to do this year!
Anthony: I really enjoyed being part of this campaign. It’s been so cool to contribute to causes that I care about.
Dylan: Delighted to be a part of the campaign! The Roosters did great.
Connor: It was a great campaign to be a part of. I’m proud of the money raised. I think we can go much better next year!
What was your favorite part of this experience?
Alex: My favorite part of this was inspiring Nick Vigder to grow his own Mo. As an elite athlete, he is the epitome of Peak Male Performance and an inspiration for us all, even The Butcher. I am also pleased to announce my mustache was auctioned to “Sully” Chris Sullivan for his contribution to the cause. Congratulations, Sully!
Anthony: My favorite part of this experience has been growing my awesome ‘stache while helping an issue I really care about.
Dylan: Doing this alongside my teammates. Go Roosters!
Connor: Spreading awareness of the importance of men’s health to my family and friends.
What will you take away from this experience in terms of maintaining your personal health while playing for RUNY?
Alex: With preseason right around the corner, I will have to be more dialed in on my diet, exercise, and recovery. Happy and Healthy players make Better players, which is something I hope catches on with the culture of this team.
Anthony: My objectives for the upcoming season haven’t changed, but I have a better understanding of how to accomplish them. It takes a mentally strong TEAM to win.
Dylan: My body is the pathway to my success on the field, so I want to make sure my physical and mental health are in good shape each time I step onto the field for practice and the matches.
Connor: I want to make sure that before each game, I’m in the right headspace so I can play the best I can each week.
What advice do you have for men who are currently battling a severe issue, whether that be a physical ailment or mental illness?
Alex: Even at your lowest low, we are here for you. Mustaches aside, there are people who care and will do whatever they can to help, support, and encourage you in your trying times. We’ve got your back bro!
Anthony: Like I said in the beginning of this campaign, things get better with time so hang in there.
Dylan: Like I said, last week F*** the Stigmas lads. It’s ok to say you’re not ok!
Connor: My advice stays the same. Don’t go at it alone! Make sure you surround yourself with positive influences. It’s ok not to be ok!
Do you have any pearls of wisdom to share with the other players and our followers about Movember?
Alex: JUST FOR MEN doesn’t come in “Subtle”.
Anthony: Yes! Be open to both receiving and giving advice to family and friends. You never really know what someone is going through internally so abide by the golden rule!
Dylan: Your core group of family and friends are always there for you in good times and bad. Lean on them, they’re always there to listen to whatever is going on with you.
Connor: If you want to get involved make sure you commit to it! Stay active on social media or with friends and family/colleagues! Get them involved and behind it too!
Will you participate in this again?
Alex: I would most certainly participate in Movember again. As they say, “whatever you grow will save a bro!” No real ‘stache for me, but my friends and family rallied to support the cause and we raised over $1,000!
Anthony: Yes, I will definitely participate. It really doesn’t take much time and hopefully I can help people in my community.
Dylan: It will be something I will continue for a long time to come.
Connor: 100%! I’ll be 1 year older, which hopefully will mean I could grow a wizard-like beard.
How does this campaign and what you’ve done impact the rugby community?
Alex: Everywhere I go my friends, coaches and teammates take shots at my little lip warmer, but at least they are noticing it and leading into a conversation about Movember and men’s health!
Anthony: The rugby community is special in that we really support and help each other. I’m always available for people to talk to or even a place to stay if you’ve been on my team (just ask Wirken).
Dylan: Mental health is crucial to successful game day performance. I’m proud to be leading the way to raising awareness of mental health among our strong rugby community here in the Tri- State.
Connor: I think it’ll help other guys on the team and in the larger rugby community be more open to talking about their feelings and mental health.
Congrats to Alex, Dylan, Connor and Anthony for growing some mean ‘staches for a great cause! Thank you to all the people who supported the guys throughout this process!
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