Inside Story: Peloton Challenge Rider, Steven Parfeniuk
When Steven’s close friend was diagnosed with cancer he wanted to find a way to help and give back. After doing an internet search for cancer support he learned about Wellspring Cancer Support Foundation. “It sounded like an amazing place for people in need of support following their cancer diagnosis,” says Steven. While on the internet, Steven saw a friend’s social media post about the Wellspring Ride for Cancer Support – Peloton Challenge and thought it was serendipitous. “It is a combination of my two great loves, philanthropy and cycling.” “I thought it would be a fun and great way to give back and I immediately knew this is how I would get involved.”
As a competitive athlete and avid cyclist, Steven was not worried about the physical aspect of the ride, but he is now focused on increasing his daily mileage so he will be able to keep up with the pace which requires cycling 120 km within six hours each day for eight days.
In addition to the physical challenge, each Peloton Challenge rider has a minimum fundraising goal of $10,000. In less than two months, Steven surpassed the goal, raising $14,500. “I wrote 100 emails to my family and friends and the donations just started to come in,” “I am so thankful for the incredible community of support that I have.”
Steven’s generous support doesn’t stop there. On top of cycling over 3,000 km to Miami, Steven and his wife Jacqueline have also decided to volunteer and drive the van that brings everyone’s bikes back to Toronto following the ride. To help even more, Steven has offered to cover all his own expenses for the trip.
Steven is looking forward to both the uphill and downhill ride through the mountains of Virginia, as well as, the night ride since cycling at night is something he is less comfortable with. When asked if there was something he was apprehensive about, he expressed feeling scared about the possibility of having to ride in the rain for his full six hour cycling shift. “The idea of the ride being continuous is a gentle reminder that when someone is living with cancer it’s non-stop,” says Steven. “Rain or shine, it’s a great way to remind us why we are riding.”
Click here to support Steven’s Peloton Challenge.