After losing nearly half his body weight in an epic weight loss battle, self-confessed fast-food junkie Adam Blanchard is set to put his new trim physique to the ultimate test.
The 28-year-old Great Western Hospital catering manager, whose job sees him surrounded by food all day long, will pedal 271 miles – the distance between London and Paris – on a static bike as part of a gruelling endurance challenge for Brighter Futures.
Getting into gear at 9am on Thursday 2 March outside the Swindon hospital, Adam will be joined on his 12 hour slog by friends and colleagues wishing to show their support.
Money raised will go towards helping Brighter Futures secure the £2.9 million needed for its Radiotherapy Appeal, which will provide the specialist machinery required at the heart of Swindon’s first radiotherapy unit.
Goodbye to Pizza Mondays
Adam said: “At 28 stone, I decided enough was enough and that it was time to turn my life around.
“I said goodbye to Pizza Mondays, Fish-and-chip Fridays and all the other days in between that were spent eating junk food and not exercising.
“As Catering Manager, I’m around food all the time but I’ve changed my outlook now and plan all my meals, which contain the good stuff your body actually craves, in advance.
“My weight-loss journey started two years ago and it’s seen my complete my first ever half marathon last autumn – something my former 28-stone-self would never had dreamt was possible.”
Adam’s new addiction to fitness sees him put on his running trainers three times a week to tackle courses of varying lengths, with the remaining days of the week filled with trips to the gym.
His new lifestyle is a far cry from the bad habits of old which saw most days start with a cooked breakfast in the GWH restaurant followed by hours at a desk before returning home to an evening on the sofa.
“Proud I can now offer my support”
If cycling the equivalent of London to Paris in one day wasn’t enough, Adam is also in the middle of a strict training regime in preparation for his first London Marathon in April.
He said: “It’s still surreal to think that my body is now capable of taking part in these iconic events, which do so much good for others.
“You don’t need to work at GWH to know that having a fully-fledged radiotherapy centre in Swindon will make a difference to thousands of local people.
“I’m proud that I can now offer my support to the Radiotherapy Appeal and I hope others will be inspired by my story to act as well.”
Since launching in 2015, more than £1.4 million has so far been raised to help bring lifesaving cancer care to Swindon.
Local people will be able to support Adam and the Radiotherapy Appeal by dropping any loose change they have in the donation buckets that will be near his bike at the entrance to the hospital.
Alternatively, anyone wishing to fundraise for Brighter Futures can find out how to do so by visiting the website, www.brighterfuturesgwh.nhs.uk,