Cycling challenge sees hospital worker from Corby complete 292 miles in 15 hours

James Donnelly completing the 292 miles
James Donnelly completing the 292 miles

A member of staff from Kettering General Hospital has successfully cycled 292 miles in just over 15 hours.

KGH local security management specialist James Donnelly, 53, from Corby, spent 15 hours and 15 minutes cycling on an exercise bike in the main hospital reception from midnight on Thursday (August 11) until 3.15pm on Friday (August 12).

The distance equates to 292 miles on a bike or 200,000 walking steps – which is about 90 miles.

James is taking part in the Global Corporate Challenge (GCC), a worldwide event that organisations can join as a way of encouraging staff to improve their health and well-being through exercise.

More than 48,000 teams at major public organisations and private companies across the world are taking part in this year’s challenge which lasts from May 25 to September 1.

James’ achievement is believed to be a record for the most equivalent steps achieved in 24 hours for those taking part in the GCC in the UK, and his efforts have also helped raise £1,000 for the hospital’s Revive the Rec Hall Appeal and Staff Benefit Fund.

James, who is married to Susan and has a daughter, Rebecca, said: “I was over the moon to have reached my 200,000 step target, to have achieved what we believe to be a UK record and to have raised some money for my colleagues at Kettering General Hospital.

“I always like to set myself challenges and that is what the Global Corporate Challenge is all about.

“I have been working on my fitness every day since the challenge started in May and built up the amount of training I was doing until I was doing a daily step average of 87,500 steps (43 walking miles per day) – which involved being on an exercise bike for more than five hours a day.

“Doing the 200,000 step challenge was tremendously draining but great fun.

“I had a lot of support over the last leg from a variety of KGH staff including the Chairman and Directors who spent time on an exercise cycle next to me to spur me on.”

The hospital’s director of human resources Mark Smith said: “James has made an amazing effort in undertaking a really difficult challenge promoting health and well-being with our trust whilst raising money for charity.

“It was fantastic to see the support James had throughout the challenge from members of staff, patients and relatives visiting the hospital on Friday.

“Our other individuals and teams all continue to contribute by challenging themselves to be more active over the 100-day period.

“Research has shown that if you can develop a positive habit over 100 days you are more likely to keep it up going forwards.

“So a big cheer and congratulations to all of the 30 teams at KGH who are continuing on their own individual journeys.”

James’ marathon effort last week was supported by Corby’s Lodge Park Sports Centre which loaned him an exercise bike to use for the challenge.

This is the second year Kettering General Hospital has taken part in the GCC challenge.