Triple cancer survivor shows importance of exercise in beating illness on 7,500-mile cycle ride
PUBLISHED: 09:01 05 June 2019 | UPDATED: 09:01 05 June 2019
Davina Searle/KMG Foundation
A man who survived a triple whammy of cancers has set off on a mammoth 7,500-mile cycle across Europe and Russia - to show the importance of exercise in beating deadly illnesses.
Chartered financial advisor Patrick McIntosh, from Shotley, was unexpectedly diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2015 after doctors noticed his dangerously low blood levels when he went to give blood.
He subsequently found out he had prostate and skin cancer simultaneously.
Having always been fit and physically active, he believes his fitness "prepared him - physically and mentally - for the challenge of beating cancer", with exercise helping him to get over the impact of surgery.
And on May 4, the rugby fan set off from Twickenham Stadium by pedal on his #LifeCycle - a Global Ride to Fight Cancer.
The 62-year-old plans to reach Tokyo in time for the Rugby World Cup and hopes to raise cash for the World Cancer Research Fund.
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Mr McIntosh was joined on the opening stretch by Colchester Rovers Cycling Club's Ian Montgomery, a fellow cancer survivor currently raising money for a hospice in Ipswich.
The pair cycled from Shotley to Harwich, discussing the importance of a maintaining a healthy diet and regularly exercising to help fight cancer.
Mr McIntosh has braved the icy northern winds of Holland and Denmark and has described parts of the epic journey as "emotionally challenging" and "incredibly painful".
"The real big issue is having to keep within a certain heart rate," he said.
"Cycling 60 miles in one day within a controlled heart rate is incredibly difficult."
However he has been motivated by the astounding natural beauty of the areas he is travelling through each day.
He describes travelling by pedal as "a constant museum" and particularly enjoys being able to stop in quiet villages and meeting the local people.
He believes cycling gives people an exclusive first-hand snapshot into culture that you would not be exposed to through any other method of travel.
To donate, visit Mr McIntosh's fundraising page here.