Niall’s Croí Cycle to show thanks for support his parent’s received

Niall Folan and his wife Catriona are living in Knocknacarra, Galway, with their 7 month old daughter, Roisin. On Sunday, July 11th, Niall took on the challenge and cycled an incredible 110km at the 27th Annual Croí Corrib Cycle in Connemara in aid of Croí!

When Niall saw the Croí Corrib Cycle advertised on Facebook, he instantly recognised Croí as both his parents are living with heart disease and have attended some of Croí’s lifestyle courses and exercise classes. His father, Enda, is living with diabetes and has had stents in his heart. In addition to using Croí’s services, Enda has worked with the National Institute for Preventive Cardiology (NIPC), providing patient information and interviews about living with diabetes.

Niall enjoys his lunch after a long 110km cycle

Niall comes from a family of rowers and he says that they have a ‘get going’ and competitive mentality. His brother, Cormac, competed in rowing at the 2008 Olympics! Back in September, Niall says, “I got a stark warning from my doctor, and my wife who is a doctor, that I needed to make some lifestyle changes. I was eating a lot of rubbish and it was all down to laziness. I was aware of the heart history in my family as well as high blood pressure and diabetes. I began my journey in losing weight and improving my overall health.”

Niall is new to cycling, having got a new bike in March and began pushing himself to reach his goals. He always enjoyed cycling, be it individually or with his brothers, but when he saw the Croí Corrib Cycle coming up, he decided to set himself a goal to complete the 110km route and his first-ever Croí Corrib Cycle. He is extremely happy he did the cycle, and did better than he expected! This was his first big outing with a cycling crew and he loved being able to join groups on the road, as well as cycling on his own at some parts. Niall’s friends and family were also a great support, helping him go beyond his fundraising target and raising over €800 for Croí!

Niall really enjoyed the 27th Annual Croí Corrib Cycle and says, “It was a brilliant event and so well-organised. It’s definitely worth doing, especially when you know it’s for a good cause and Croí is helping so many people.”

Thank you again to everyone who participated in the Croí Corrib Cycle on Sunday, July 11th. To view our photos from the day, check out our Facebook photo album here.

The power of cycling: Pat Horan, 70, shares his recovery story

This week is Men’s Health Week. Croí cyclist, Pat Horan, shares his story to help raise awareness and support others.

Pat Horan, from Aglish in North Tipperary, credits his daily hour of cycling for keeping him fit and healthy at 70 years of age. Well known as the owner of Pat Horan Motors, a family run business with motorhomes and campers for sale, Pat is gearing up for the Croí Corrib Cycle, in aid of a charity that is very close to his heart.

In 2017, while Pat was out for his daily cycle and only one mile from home, he lost all energy and knew something wasn’t right. He didn’t have the typical heart attack symptoms of chest pain, but he knew he needed to get to the doctor right away. Pat was rushed to Limerick where he received stents in his heart, and then was referred to Dublin for a triple heart bypass.

Pat went to great lengths to reduce his risk of heart disease, even cutting out butter, sugar and salt from his diet over 25 years ago, but Pat’s family history was something that could not be modified. His advice for people recovering from heart surgery is to get out and get active: “You will be sore, but get out and go for a walk. Fresh air is amazing… do what you can and drink plenty of water,” says Horan.

Pat credits cycling and his fitness level for keeping him alive. “I go at my own pace, I like cycling on my own as there is no pressure. I head off at 8am in the morning and it sets me up for the day,” says Horan.

Pat on his bike

Pat is a motor sport enthusiast, and is looking forward to the restrictions being lifted so he can travel to Europe again to compete in the rallies with his youngest daughter, Noelle, his co-pilot. They have been invited to the Goodwood Festival of Speed for the last number of years and also have taken part in the Legendary Eifel Rally Festival.

Pat is looking forward to a great day out at the Croí Corrib Cycle on Sunday, July 11th. Learn more and register now at croi.ie/cycle. Funds raised support Croí’s work in fighting heart disease and stroke.

Mayo Cyclists take on ‘Everesting’ challenge in aid of Croí & Mayo Mental Health Services

A group of Mayo mountain bike enthusiasts are taking on the Everesting challenge – ascending and descending a total of 8,848 metres, the elevation of Mount Everest, to raise much-needed funds for Croí, the heart and stroke charity, and Mayo Mental Health Services. The off-road cycle challenge, happening on June 19th, will take place on the iconic pilgrimage trail of the Western Way, which is located on the Westport side of Croagh Patrick.

The trail being used in this challenge, known locally named as Skelp, is 700m long with 88m of elevation per ascent. To achieve the 8,848 meters needed to complete this challenge, the team will ascend the mountain over 100 times! This challenge will be intensely physical and will be a huge test of the group’s physical, mental and technical endurance.

The mountain bikers are among the first-in-Ireland to take on an off-road Everesting challenge, also claiming three extra Everesting achievements with the route ticking the classification of ‘Soil’ – requiring you to get dirty whilst climbing; ‘Short’ – you have to go steep; and ‘Significant’ – a climb that is iconic.

The Mayo mountain bike group, led by Padraig Marrey from Ballinrobe, are trying to promote off-road cycling and bring it to the masses. “If we can get kids off-roading from an early age it will make them better bike handlers. It’s so much fun and a great way to keep kids involved in cycling,” says Marrey.

Donate now in support of this incredible challenge, in aid of two local charities. Visit www.idonate.ie/everestingoffroad or contact padraigmarrey@gmail.com

DSC_0036

Croí Corrib Cycle Announces Exciting New Routes for 2021

BACK IN THE SADDLE AGAIN FOR CROÍ!

Croí, the heart and stroke charity, has announced the return of its annual Croí Corrib Cycle with a special, limited-capacity ride-out taking place on Sunday, July 11.

Following last year’s cycle cancellation due to COVID-19, the hugely popular fundraising event is returning with an exciting new innovation for 2021 which will see the cycle starting and finishing in the picturesque village of Maam Cross. 2021 is the 27th year of the Croí Corrib Cycle and Croí is especially proud that Corrib Oil has been its primary sponsor during all of that time, since the very first ride-out in 1995.

With so many people eager to get out and see the world again, and with such a picturesque itinerary and a great cause to support, interest is expected to be intense this year. In line with COVID-19 guidelines, places will be limited to a maximum of 300 participants and start times will be staggered to allow for social distancing.

Participants are therefore being urged to sign up early to secure their spot on the start line in Maam Cross – simply visit www.croi.ie/cycle or contact fundraising@croi.ie

There will be two scenic routes to choose from – an 80km and a 110km option. Both routes will start and finish within the grounds of Peacockes Hotel in Maam Cross. The 80km route will take cyclists from Maam Cross, towards Leenane, along Loch na Fooey, towards Finny, Clonbur, Cornamona and finishing back in Maam Cross. The 110km route will take cyclists along a similar starting route before venturing to Toormakeady, Maumtrasna, Clonbur and returning to Maam Cross.

Ride On!
Christine Flanagan, Croí Fundraising Director, is thrilled to be hosting events in the real world once more:

“We are delighted that our first physical fundraising event of the year will be our cycle on July 11. This cycle is synonymous with Croí and we are really looking forward to getting people back safely on their bikes and on the roads around Maam Cross. All funds raised from this event are vitally important to us to ensure that we can continue our work at Croí, leading the fight against heart disease and stroke in the West of Ireland.”

Registration costs €150, of which €50 is to be paid upon registration. Participants then have the option to either fundraise the additional €100 or pay the full amount on registration. Roadside assistance, support vehicles, refreshment stops and post-cycle food will be provided on the day, with social distancing and safety precautions uppermost in mind. All registered cyclists will receive a specially-designed Croí cycle jersey, water bottle and face covering, as well as being entered into a raffle to win a fantastic cycling equipment package courtesy of West Side Cycles.

Register now at www.croi.ie/cycle