Team Edinburgh

Neil McPherson

BBC Children in Need fund projects that help in situations that I felt require support.

I was recently diagnosed with a rare condition and ill for around 18 months. It wasn't until my sixth hospital admission that a diagnosis was made. I was supported by the bank, my colleagues and family but it makes you wonder how you would cope if you had an employer that didn't look after you or were a single parent with young children that had to care for you.

BBC Children in Need funds projects that help in these situations and I therefore felt very strongly that I wanted to support it. I am now regaining my fitness and this challenge will give me motivation to continue my recovery.

The fundraising is going well and I have almost reached my £2,500 target with £2,404 raised so far thanks to all of my colleagues, friends and family who have baked cakes, helped at car boot sales, bought prize draw tickets or just donated.

Training is also going well although I don’t think I will ever feel truly ready. I only wish it was more hilly where I train as climbing is my weakest area and I know the Edinburgh route is particularly hilly. I am nervous, hoping that i can stay well and injury free up until the ride and also nervous about keeping up the required pace. The distance is less of a concern, it’s more the average speed especially when a few hills are thrown in.

My hardest training ride so far was a recent 60 mile ride in winds gusting up to 45 mph. It was almost unrideable with a side wind and I was even having to work hard going downhill with the head wind. I persevered though as you never know what the actual challenge will throw at you and you can’t just go home if the going gets tough.

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