Last four days of an ar­du­ous jour­ney left

Fos­ter Clark Life­Cy­cle Chal­lenge

The Malta Independent on Sunday - - NEWS -

Af­ter yes­ter­day’s ride, Fos­ter Clark Life­Cy­cle Chal­lenge has four more days of ar­du­ous jour­neys on the pedal in the ex­treme heat of Oman. Over these re­main­ing days they will cy­cle over 200 kilo­me­tres and for the next two days it will be on desert roads.

“We trav­elled an­other 200km yes­ter­day, as we are get­ting ac­cus­tomed to the tem­per­a­ture. We have found ex­cel­lent roads and good camp­ing fa­cil­i­ties and on Fri­day we hit the coast, just south of Sur. Then we cy­cled be­tween the desert and shark-in­fested wa­ters!” said Alan Curry, founder of Life­Cy­cle (Malta) Foun­da­tion.

It has of­ten been said that an en­durance chal­lenge of this cal­i­bre re­quires both phys­i­cal fit­ness and men­tal per­se­ver­ance. Spend­ing an av­er­age of eight hours a day on a bike will take a toll phys­i­cally – with blis­ters, sores and bruises – along with a strong men­tal­ity. On days when the cy­clists are sur­rounded by desert land­scape, their frame of mind is just as im­por­tant as much as their phys­i­cal fit­ness to fin­ish the day’s jour­ney.

“As a Foun­da­tion, we raise aware­ness on re­nal disease and have of­ten spo­ken about the or­deals through which pa­tients go when on dial­y­sis or re­ceiv­ing a donor kid­ney,” said Mr Curry. “We of­ten com­pare the phys­i­cal chal­lenges we face as a way of show­ing sup­port for re­nal pa­tients. The psy­cho­log­i­cal as­pect of our chal­lenge re­minds us of the trauma and dif­fi­cul­ties kid­ney pa­tients go through when bat­tling the disease.”

Af­ter many hours of desert roads, the cy­clists and back-up team ar­rive at their des­ti­na­tion – a camp­ing site in the desert, and sleep­ing is again on sand. But there is still a sil­ver lin­ing – they watch the beauty of the sun sink­ing be­low the hori­zon over the sand dunes, as they sense the fin­ish­ing line is get­ting closer.

For the past 19 years, Life­Cy­cle Chal­lenge has been rais­ing money to help with the needs and care of kid­ney disease pa­tients. Life­Cy­cle (Malta) Foun­da­tion also sup­ports re­search study at the Uni­ver­sity of Malta and gen­er­ates fur­ther aware­ness on or­gan do­na­tions and or­gan trans­plants.

Do­na­tions can be pledged on-line on­cy­clechal­ and web vis­i­tors can view up­dates on the Fos­ter Clark Life­Cy­cle Chal­lenge on Face­book page: www.face­­cy­clechal­lenge

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