A cancer survivor is pulling on his trainers for a year-long charity challenge.
Karl Hodgson, 26, from Walton-le-Dale, near Preston, has taken on the challenge of running at least one mile a day for a year.
And if that wasn’t enough, he is also cycling from Land’s End to John O’Groats to raise funds for The Christie Hospital, Manchester.
As a former Christie patient, Karl wanted to raise funds for the hospital that treated him for Hodgkin Lymphoma when he was just 17.
Hodgkin Lymphoma is a cancer of the lymphatic system – part of the body’s immune system.
More than 20 per cent of people diagnosed with Hodgkin Lymphoma each year are young children, teenagers or young adults up to the age of 24.
I was diagnosed in 2006 and treated at The Christie for a total of seven months: six months of intensive chemotherapy followed by a month of radiotherapy.Karl Hodgson
Karl said: “I was diagnosed in 2006 and treated at The Christie for a total of seven months: six months of intensive chemotherapy followed by a month of radiotherapy.
“I went through all the common side-effects, losing all my hair, except for a few eyelashes and eyebrows. I remember having a full body shave in the bath before my hair started to fall out... smooth isn’t the word!
“It was a scary time as I was so young, but as soon as I arrived I was made to feel welcome and calm. The nurses were class, coming round every hour and checking on me… not really talking about cancer but taking my mind off it.
“Without the help of everyone at The Christie, I wouldn’t be here today to take part in this challenge and be able to give something back.”
On January 1, Karl set himself the task of running at least a mile every day for the full year of 2015. He plans to complete a series of 5ks, 10ks, half-marathons and a full marathon during the year which will take him towards his target of 1,000 miles.
He is also taking on the extra challenge of cycling from Land’s End to John O’Groats with two friends.
In a tough 10-day cycle, the lads will average 100 miles a day. They will have no support and will carry all their supplies on their bikes and backs.
Karl said: “It’s the hardest physical and mental challenge I will ever be a part of.
“After training rides I have to get straight into my running gear and make sure I run at least a mile. It can be a real slog.
“However, it’s all for an incredible cause and I am getting fitter and fitter.
“I’m 103 days into my challenge and I’ve already run 292 miles, cycled 1,201 miles and raised £609.50”
Sinead Kennedy, fundraising co-ordinator at The Christie charity, said: “We are blown away by the extraordinary efforts Karl is making to fundraise for The Christie.
“The money he raises will make such a difference to our patients who are going through what Karl has already experienced. Please get behind Karl and support him in this amazing challenge.”
To help Karl with his fundraising visit www.justgiving.com/end2endKH
To find out more about Karl’s training and progress, visit his blog at www.teddyhodgson.blogspot.co.uk.