Conor to take on Cykelnerven for Multiple Sclerosis research
An Inishowen man, whose ethos is ‘healthy body, healthy mind’ is to take on one of the world’s toughest charity cycling challenges in France to raise funds for Multiple Sclerosis research.
Conor Carey, from Buncrana and who now lives in Fahan, was diagnosed with Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis (PPMS) three and a half years ago.
The father of two young children, aged seven and four, told the ‘Journal’ the diagnosis came as a huge shock to him and his family. Conor, who is married to Sharon, did not have many symptoms initially, but had frequent episodes of falling. He was referred to Galway hospital for an MRI and PPMS was confirmed.
As its name suggests, PPMS is progressive. Conor told how it “took a while” for the diagnosis to sink in. But, inspired by fellow Inishowen man ‘Positive Paddy,’ who promotes positivity on a popular Facebook page, Conor decided to look at his diagnosis and the way forward from a different angle. He adopted a positive mental attitude and also incorporated a healthy diet by eating much greener and juicing. Conor has also adopted a strong exercise regime and while he attended the gym, an injury led him to reformer pilates, which he described as “a game changer.” A keen cyclist and former member of North Pole Cycling Club, Conor decided to undertake the gruelling Cykelnerven,known as Europe’s most unique and challenging charity cycling event to help MS research. He will be the first Irish person with PPMS to undertake it and will ride 355km over four days on the tough Tour De France mountain stages of 18, 19 and 20.
It’s a tough undertaking and not one Conor is taking lightly. After applying to take part in the event, he admitted he “panicked a wee bit” when he realised the extent of it. Enter Inishowen cyclist Ronan McLaughlin of Panache Coaching, who has been putting Conor through intensive training over the last six weeks. Conor said he has been “coming on leaps and bounds” and credits Ronan, alongside Davy in Total Cycling, Pennyburn for their support. Conor needs to raise E2000 for the cycling event, which will go towards MS research.
Any other monies will go to Donegal MS. All support is appreciated and donations can be made via www.gofundme.com/progressive-ms-research