World class shot putter Jacko Gill couldn't believe what he was seeing at the national high performance gym in Albany.
"There were these two guys there flipping a massive tyre non-stop – it must have been about 100kg," recalls the former world junior number one, who is on an impressive comeback trail in the senior ranks.
"It was all the other athletes there were talking about.
"I turned up for my second session that day, 10 hours later, and nothing had changed. They were still flipping the same tyre, and everybody was still talking about them.
"They are two amazing guys, and it turned out they were doing it for a great cause."
The two guys are Gareth Edwards and Tom Moore, the tyre is 93kg and the cause is men's mental health.
Their aim: to set a new world 24-hour tyre-flipping record that will take a lot of beating.
Edwards, aged 39, and Moore, aged 28, will take 10-minute turns flipping the tyre at Albany's Millennium Institute on July 20. They hope to crack the 30km mark in 24 hours of non-stop flipping.
It was a weighty task for the tyre tag team to even meet the Guinness World Record criteria. The many stipulations include that every last second is filmed.
Then the really heavy work began.
Practice includes hours and hours of flipping a tyre up Edwards' gently sloping drive at his Forrest Hill home.
Moore will even do a few hours of martial arts before a tyre-flipping session to test his resolve in a "depleted state".
He says the mental preparation involves blotting out "how brutal it will be to flip it for so many hours".
They've done trial runs over six, eight and 12 hours and could barely use their hands the next day.
They have called in mental skills expert David Niethe, a powerlifting champion, who has pointed out three stages of emotions: aggressive, passive and calm flow.
"Tom can almost be over aggressive by his own admission, I'm almost too passive. We need to be in the same energy zone, in the flow state," says Edwards.
There's also the important issue of how they relate to each other.
There is a natural competitive aspect – the flip count. Each has managed a few more flips than the other over the various trials.
Edwards said: "We do need to watch the language we use around each other. We need to remain positive for each other."
This is far from being a two man operation.
Their crew will include Niethe, a chiropractor, massage therapist, St John ambulance officers, two official witnesses, shifts of people logging every flip plus friends who will bring food.
The cause itself will drive them on - Givealittle crowdfunding donations go to the Sir John Kirwan Foundation, which aims to give young people the ability to deal with mental health issues.
Both Edwards and Moore have experienced low times.
"We're doing this to help people speak up about mental health," Edwards said.
"Suicide is one of the biggest killers for men, and helping youth is a priority.
"Young people need to have the tools…they need to know (the low times) won't last forever.
"We've both had time when we needed help, been in some dark places."
Moore – who is also a teacher - was diagnosed with depression in his early 20s, and has lost friends and associates to suicide.
He said the brutal tyre-flipping project was a chance to show strength comes in various forms.
"There is a stereotype of what it is to be strong as a male in New Zealand," said Moore, a deputy house leader at Macleans College.
"Men have bottled up their feelings…whereas opening up is actually brave and courageous.
"I still have my struggles. I saw this as a platform…to help men have the courage to ask for help and seek counselling."
Edwards and Moore will also happily salute any challengers to their record.
"If you're mad enough to try, we'll help you out," says Edwards.
"We want to set a record that's hard to beat. The amount of work we've put in…if someone can beat it, all credit to them."
WHERE TO GET HELP:
If you are worried about your or someone else's mental health, the best place to get help is your GP or local mental health provider. However, if you or someone else is in danger or endangering others, call police immediately on 111.
OR IF YOU NEED TO TALK TO SOMEONE ELSE:
• LIFELINE: 0800 543 354 or 09 5222 999 within Auckland (available 24/7)
• SUICIDE CRISIS HELPLINE: 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO) (available 24/7)
• YOUTHLINE: 0800 376 633 ,free text 234 or email email@example.com or online chat.
• NEED TO TALK? Free call or text 1737 (available 24/7)
• KIDSLINE: 0800 543 754 (available 24/7)
• WHATSUP: 0800 942 8787 (1pm to 11pm)
• DEPRESSION HELPLINE: 0800 111 757
• SAMARITANS – 0800 726 666.