If you’re looking for a way to challenge yourself physically while also taking up a good cause, you have to check out Maggie’s Monster Bike + Hike. There are tons of ways to give to charity; some of us donate money or goods while the rest of us get off our keisters and ride for those in need.
It’s no secret that those of us at London Cyclist are suckers for a good cause and a good long ride, which is why we’re sharing Maggie’s Monster Bike + Hike. It’s the ultimate physical challenge, giving you a chance to compete with other cyclists and hikers for a good cause.
So clear your calendars for the first weekend in May and prepare to push yourself to the limits.
Before you decide whether or not to ride and hike for the cause, let’s talk a bit about Maggie’s.
Maggie’s is a support centre for those living with cancer as well as their friends and family members. Whether you or someone you love has just been diagnosed or has been living with cancer for some time, Maggie’s provides a place to go for emotional support, social interaction and information on how to eat to maximise health, benefits or to simply interact with others who understand that cancer doesn’t just affect the patient but everyone who loves them.
Based on the support program founded by Maggie Keswick Jencks, Maggie’s Centres provide a safe place so cancer patients and loved ones can have community and social support.
As part of the NHS cancer hospitals, there are now 17 Maggie’s Centres throughout the UK.
Monster Bike + Hike
Now that you know what you’ll be riding and hiking for, here are some of the challenge specifics.
The first thing you’ll need is a team made up of at least 2 people but as many as 6, because this is a team challenge, lasting 24 hours in the Scottish Highlands. You and your teammates, along with 2 support team members, will cycle 31 miles and then you get to choose how far you’re able to hike; 9, 23 or 41 miles.
To participate in the Monster Bike + Hike you must register your team and support crew. The requirements are basic: you must be over 18 on the day the race beings (3 May 2014), provide contact and age verification for each member and raise £375 per team member (crew too!). If you want to participate in this year’s challenge but don’t have a team, check out Maggie’s Facebook page to search for team members or hit up your local bike club.
The race itself begins bright and early on 3 May with the 31-mile cycle from Neptune’s Staircase to Fort Augustus and then you trade your wheels for hiking boots for the Bronze, Silver and Gold hiking trails. When your team finishes the Monster Bike + Hike will depend on how well your team trains in the weeks and months leading up to the challenge.
You’ll need to decide if you want to hire a bike or bring your own to Fort William, but you will also need loads of other equipment including tyre removal and repair kit, first aid, event map, helmet (yes it’s compulsory), waterproof rucksack and spare clothes just to name a few. You’ll get all the specifics when you register, but know that you’ll need to be prepared for this 24-hour challenge.
Then there’s the fundraising. You should make it a team effort since the whole team must raise £375 per person, but don’t worry because the Monster Bike + Hike website provides tons of fundraising ideas. There’s not much time left so get your teammates and start raising money for a good cause and training for a brag-worthy finish time.
Just in case you need a little extra motivation, you should know that the course record for this challenge is 9 hours and 34 minutes. Think you can beat it?
Maggie’s Monster Bike + Hike
When: 3-4 May 2014
Where: Great Glen Way (Scottish Highlands)
Teams: 2-6 people plus at least 2 support crew members
Fundraising Goal: £375 per participant
Bike: 31 miles
Hike: 9, 23 or 41 miles
Registration cut-off: 2 May 2014
How? Register on the website
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As seen on The Guardian, BBC and The Independent.