Graham Reitzin may be fighting his own cancer battle, but he isn’t letting that stop him from helping others fight theirs.
On Saturday, the 65-year-old Sydneysider will embark on the 200 kilometre Ride to Conquer Cancer.
Mr Reitzin’s task will be difficult due to his battle with small cell cancer – an aggressive disease with a slim survival rate.
But he had already committed to participating in the event before his diagnosis, and he’s determined to follow through.
“It’s the challenge of mind and body for me,” he said.
“I used to do 80 kilometre rides on Sunday mornings with a group and this brought back fond memories of that.
“The more I thought about it and how difficult it would make the ride, the more I started embracing the idea of doing it as a fundraiser as well.”
The Ride to Conquer Cancer sees participants peddle from Homebush to Windsor and back.
The event raises money for Chris O’Brien Lifehouse – a not-for-profit integrated cancer treatment facility at Sydney’s Prince Alfred Hospital.
Mr Reitzin said training for the two-day slog had been tough since his chemotherapy and radiotherapy began.
“Mind you I am down eight kilograms … the nutritionist says ‘no, that’s a bummer, it’s not a good thing to lose so much weight so quickly’,” he said.
“But for me it’s an advantage because it means I will be able to climb hills more easily, so you might say there is a silver lining to every cloud.
“I think it’s going to be really tough. My wife doesn’t think I’ll make it and my oncologist says it’s ambitious.”
But Mr Reitzin isn’t letting either of them stand in the way of “the ride of my life”.