Leon Kiriaev has been training hard for this Sunday’s City2Surf.
But the 25-year-old knows he is in for an uphill battle when it comes to the two-kilometre stretch of New South Head Road known as Heartbreak Hill.
“I’ve done most of my training on the flat so I am bit anxious about going uphill,” he said. “We will see how I go at the end I suppose but that’s definitely the tricky part.”
The Fairfield resident knows a thing or two about uphill battles.
Only last year he was 40 kilograms heavier and struggled with high blood pressure.
After losing the weight and improving his fitness and health his goal was to participate and finish a fun run to motivate others to make similar changes to their lifestyle.
The next challenge was finding a charity to raise money for.
He settled on the Humpty Dumpty Foundation who raise money to provide medical equipment for hospitals.
“What caught my eye was the medicine dispensing equipment raised for the paediatrics ward at The Children’s Hospital at Westmead helped by the charity,” he said. “My sister works as a midwife and has told me stories about the charity donating life-saving equipment to Westmead’s hospitals and of course, Fairfield Hospital.”
I know the need for life-saving equipment to prolong and extend the lives of young children.Leon Kiriaev
Mr Kiriaev knows first-hand about the importance of quality medical equipment.
One area of research for the PhD student is studying the effects of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy – a genetic muscle disorder affecting 1 in 3,500 people.
“I have a thorough understanding of its effects on both skeletal and cardiac muscles and the need for life-saving equipment to prolong and extend the lives of young children with the disease,” he said. “Hence stressing the important work of Humpty Dumpty Foundation in raising money to provide equipment as such for children in hospital.”
The Humpty Dumpty Foundation has raised more than $335,000 since 2010 from the City2Surf resulting in 31 pieces of medical equipment delivered to 12 hospitals across the state.
- To donate: city2surf2017.everydayhero.com/au/leon-kiriaev.