“On your bike! Nightrider 2015, bring it on”
by Sacha Fry Marie Curie fundraiser Sacha Fry is taking on this year’s Nightrider cycle challenge in memory of her mum, who was cared for by a Marie Curie Nurse. Nightrider is a 100km twilight cycle event around some of London’s most popular landmarks.
As a keen fundraiser I am always on the lookout for my yearly charity event. This year is no exception, I have decided to take on a new challenge, jumping on a bike and cycling a casual 100km around London. ‘What fun it will be’ I thought as I discussed the idea with my friend, not quite taking into consideration that cycling 100km isn’t quite the same as a 20 minute cycle session at the gym. Keeping fit and healthy is a big part of my life, and what better way to incorporate it than combining fitness with fundraising? Each year, I take part in a different charity event and this year’s event of choice is Nightrider , cycling past 50 iconic London landmarks alongside 4,500 other participants.
Why I’m taking on the challenge
I am cycling Nightrider in memory of my beautiful mum, Julie. Just over three years ago my mum lost her battle with cancer, only eight weeks and one day after being diagnosed. When you hear the word ‘cancer’ you can’t help but feel scared. ‘Not my mum, this must be a dream’ I remember thinking after we heard the diagnosis. Cue the crazy thoughts and fears that run through your mind, the shock, heartbreak and devastation that slap you hard in the face. My mum had always suffered with ill health, though you’d never have known it. Beautiful and strong both inside and out. Her illness was just a way of life for her, regular check-ups and hospital stays at the Royal Brompton and Harefield came and went, but she still remained so positive. The night before my mum passed away a Marie Curie Nurse provided care and comfort to her throughout the early hours, in our own home. The work that the nurse provided was so special and it really helped me, the rest of my family, and more importantly my mum. It provided us all with a rest bite from what was obviously a very difficult situation. My mum really was amazing, she was my best friend. We spent a lot of time together; gossiping away, sipping on tea and munching on cake. From sleepovers at the hospital to our incredible trip to New York, there wasn’t anyone else I would want to be spending my time with. Anyone who knew her or met her felt the same way, always looking immaculate, putting ‘healthy people’ to shame. She was an incredible woman.
A long road, but worthwhile one
Fundraising in memory of my mum and helping an amazing charity like Marie Curie provides me with great encouragement. It really helps me to put on my cycling shorts and get out on the bike. So far, the furthest I have cycled in one sitting is 12 miles, a route which my dad and I have completed numerous times together. I still have a long way to go to get up to the 62 miles required on 6 June. I have entered Nightrider with my friend, Vicki. She completed it last year, so I blame her for dragging me into it. We plan on doing more training together once the weather warms up, a few degrees over freezing would be lovely! Until then, I have taken to longer bike rides at the gym and working on building up my leg and bum muscles, to ensure that my legs don’t fail me when I hit those last hard miles. So lots of weighted squats and leg sessions at the gym are taking place, watch out Kim Kardashian! On that note, I am off to the gym to get my cycle on! If you would like to find out more information visit the Nightrider website.