For Tammy Block, co owner of Push Cycling Studio, the Ride to Conquer Cancer is very close to her.
Block lost her father to pancreatic cancer six years ago. "It was devastating...Pancreatic cancer is a cancer when you find out about it, it's too late.
This is the second year that Block and Janine Hartsook, co-owner of Push Cycling Studio have participated in the ride.
Their team consisted of five people last year. This year, Block and Hartsook had a team of 14 people and they raised just over $36,000.
Each rider had a fundraising commitment of $2,500, so all 14 team members from Push decided to work together and hold larger fundraisers to bring in the money they needed.
"We were able to reach our goals and beyond," says Block.
Hartsook explained that there was lots of training involved. There was indoor training during the winter months, and then when the weather began to get warmer they would begin doing group rides outdoors and training along the highway.
"I know why they make the ride as challenging as they do, because for people who are facing cancer or are in treatment there are times where they have given up hope, but then there are times where you gain some strength and a little positive energy," says Hartsook.
According to Hartsook she believes the ride was put into place so that others can emotionally feel how those struggling with cancer are feeling during treatments.
"There were times I was actually calling out to my dad to push me up the hill," says Block.
The ride is 224 kilometers. The riders all start at Calgary Olympic Park and make their way through Springbank, Bragg Creek, and Turner Valley, and then end up in Okotoks.
"I'm still on a high from the experience this weekend, its amazing" said Hartsook.
Push will participate in the ride next year, and will be fundraising in the future year leading up to the next Ride to Conquer Cancer.
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