How to create your own cycling challenge
How Nic Christie used fundraising to get fit:
A few years ago I decided I wanted to take on a huge challenge to get myself fit. I was 46, had a prolapsed disc and was carrying a bit of extra weight. So I decided to cycle 273 miles from Portsmouth to Penzance, despite having not set foot on bike in over 25 years! It was a huge challenge, but was one of the most amazing things I’d ever done.
Just a few months after my ride, my amazing mum was diagnosed with late stage bowel cancer. I decided I wanted to take on another challenge, this time to raise money for Bowel Cancer UK. I planned a 1,000 mile ride from John O'Groats to Land’s End. It felt like a mad idea, but one I knew I had to do. My mum was so supportive, making sure I did my training and encouraging me all the way.
Then, six months after she was diagnosed with the disease and just before the cycle, she died.
I knew mum would want me to carry on. So I dedicated this bike ride to her memory and managed to raise an incredible £5,500.
I haven’t stopped cycling or fundraising since. In 2015, I reversed my 1000 mile bike ride and cycled from Land’s End to John O’Groats (it would have been rude not to go the other way!) raising £3,000.
After a really bad back injury I’ve been unable to cycle as much as I’d like, but it’s not stopping me. I’ve just switched the bike for a trike and in 2019 I’m taking on the 1000 mile ride from St Malo to Nice, to raise even more money for the charity.
If you’re inspired by Nic’s story, we’ve put together some tips below on how to start your own cycling fundraiser.
How to turn your love for cycling into a fundraising challenge
Set yourself a fundraising target
Give yourself a clear target and ask everyone you know to sponsor you to complete it. You could make the target based on the distance that you’re cycling, for instance you could aim to raise £50 for every mile.
Choose a route that challenges you
It could be a long distance, somewhere that you’ve always wanted to visit, or cycling to a special place for you and your family. Doing something that’s a personal challenge or a bit out of the ordinary will encourage more people to support you.
Make it virtual
You don’t have to brave the elements while doing your cycling event. Why not work out the amount of miles on a route and then aim to cycle that distance over the space of a month on a stationary bike? Make sure to set up in an area you know lots of people will go through, so you can get donations whilst cycling.
Try something new
If you fancy trying something a bit different or more social, you could organise a spin class in your local community. It’s a fun way to raise funds and get others involved!
Get everyone involved
Family, friends, colleagues and your local community – get everyone involved by setting a day for them to come along. They can either join in with your cycling or wait at the end to cheer you along.