Cancer survivor runs a mile a day in fundraising effort for The Christie

Press release posted 07 April 2015

Karl Hodgson, 26, from Walton Le Dale in Preston is taking on the impressive challenge of running at least one mile a day for a year and cycling from Lands' End to John O'Groats to raise funds for The Christie.

As a former Christie patient, Karl wanted to raise funds for the hospital that treated him for Hodgkin Lymphoma when he was just 17 years old.

Hodgkin Lymphoma is a cancer of the lymphatic system - part of the body's immune system. Over 20% of people diagnosed with Hodgkin Lymphoma each year are young children, teenagers, or young adults up to the age of 24.

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 eye brows. 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 the cancer but taking my mind off it.

"The treatment was worth it, because 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 the 1st January 2015, 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 5k's, 10k's, half marathons and a full marathon during the year which will take him towards his target of 1000 miles.

Karl is also taking on the extra challenge of cycling from Lands' End to John O'Groats with two friends. A tough ten 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 nearly 100 days into my challenge and I've already run 270 miles, cycled 820 miles and raised £540.97."

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.

The Christie charity supports the work of The Christie NHS Foundation Trust through its fundraising activities, and delivers projects, equipment and improvements that are in line with the Trust's overall plans and strategy. The charity has over 30,000 supporters who raised a record breaking £14.8m last year.

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