I turned the heart-breaking situation of losing my dad into pedal power

6th October 2022

After losing his father to the disease, Forbes decided to take on the epic challenge of the “toughest amateur cycling race in the world” to help find new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer.

I was devastated when I lost my father to cancer last year. When my friend Bruce, who is an incredibly keen cyclist, suggested we did something different to raise money for cancer, I was up for it. This ended up with me taking part in the hardest cycling challenge in the world – the Haute Route Alps! It’s a race for 7 days covering 792 km and 69,881 ft uphill.

Dad would be looking down and be proud of me

The first two days were incredibly difficult; not necessarily the distance, but the climbing uphill. We were cycling steep mountains for hours on end in the scorching heat, and at times really thought about giving up. I didn’t think I had it in me to get to the end of the week. My family really supported me through this and told me Dad would be proud. This made me really emotional, and remembered exactly why I was doing this in the first place. So, I hopped back on my bike the next day, and never looked back!

Despite it being the most painful thing I’ve ever done, I really enjoyed it, and I would do it all over again if it helped raise the money needed to fund discoveries into cancer. I made some friendships for life on the challenge, including a man from America who was doing it for his fiancé who has cancer. Everyone taking part was doing so for someone close to them, and for a cause close to their hearts; it was really special and inspiring.

If my dad was still here, I probably wouldn’t have done it. I probably wouldn’t have found Worldwide Cancer Research, or raised this money to help make their research possible. But turning the heart-breaking and sad situation of losing my dad into something positive has really helped me mentally over the last few months. It was great to have a focus during an emotional time. And I’m sure I would have made Dad laugh by seeing me dressed in lycra for almost a week!

I would do it all over again if it helped raise the money needed to fund discoveries into cancer

To think that the money we’ve raised by doing this – which is an incredibly £10,000 - could help another family someday, and help stop the suffering cancer causes, means the absolute world to me.

I absolutely love the work that Worldwide Cancer Research does; cancer affects so many of us, which is why it’s so important that we back researchers across the world.

It’s crucial that we help raise awareness and funds to make this discovery research possible so that one day – in years to come – people won’t have to go through the tragedies and loss that we have.

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