Category Archives: Media

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cropped-web_header_bannerV2So you want to cycle across America?

Lecture at Edinburgh Festival of Cycling. June 13th 2014

Meet Chris Oliver, AKA the @CyclingSurgeon, he is an inspirational Edinburgh Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon. Eight years ago he could not climb a flight of stairs let alone ride a bike. He was over 27 stone and had weight loss surgery. Twelve stones lighter he cycled 3,500 miles across USA in the summer of 2013 with his daughter. Come and be motivated by Chris’s incredible transformational journey and fight against obesity. Details and booking here

Media after TransAmerica Cycle

List of published Media

NHS Lothian Connections February 2014

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Fat Surgeon on the cycle path to a slim future
Scottish Daily Mail
Jan 2014

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Los Angeles to Boston 2013, 3,500 miles in 4 minutes TransAmerica cycle. YouTube Video

From Los Angeles to Boston an epic ride across the United States
Guardian Bike Blog – 18 July 2013  and comments

The Day I changed my Life – Interview with Heather Suttie
BBC Radio Scotland – 2 July 2013

John Beattie: Super Stories…Chris Oliver
BBC Radio Scotland – June 27, 2013

Charity boss to finish cycle across America
Women’s Cycling – June 28, 2013

The ‘Cycling Surgeon’ and his daughter across the US for WaterAid
CTC Webpage – June 28, 2013

Surgeon Looses half his 27 stone bodyweight
Deadline News – July 2013

Duo Complete US Cycling Challenge
WaterAid Website – July 2013

Endurance cycling TransAmerica with a bike called Pseudomonas
Guest Blog Cycle Law – Scotland August 9th 2013

Staff of the week – Mr Chris Oliver, Orthopaedic surgeon
Edinburgh Medical School – July 2013

Chris Oliver in WaterAid charity ride across US
Surgeons’News September 2013

Endurance cycling TransAmerica with a bike called Pseudomonas
CTC Blog August 2013

Inspirational Journeys: A Bike Ride Across America
Virgin Atlantic Blog August 2013

Endurance cycling TransAmerica with a bike called Pseudomonas
Scottish Cycling Magazine Winter 2013

Cycling Due turn miles into pounds
NHS Lothian Connections – July 2013

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Riding Across America
CTC Cycle – Summer 2013

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How I lost 12 stone and got my life back
The Weekly News – Aug 3, 2013
Meningitis Trust promotion for the Big Swim in Elie & Cycle

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Just over 100 miles to cycle to the Atlantic Ocean at Boston

Today was a wet hilly day from Albany to Battleboro, VT. I have had trouble with both my hands having crushed both my median nerves in the carpal tunnels. I do not have carpal tunnel syndrome but I have muscle weakness especially in my right hand which affects my grip, it’s very difficult to brake and change gears. It will recover in a few days to weeks once I get off the bike.

Cycling an average of 85 miles has been truely exhausting. It’s a bit like running a marathon every day. It’s a bit like doing a job. The alarm goes off at 0530, it’s the worst bit of the day. 0600 breakfast, then riding by about 0700. Once I’m on the bike, I’m free from any worries. Nothing really gets sore. I just have a deep sense of fatigue. I was stronger in the hills of Missouri.  i just seem to have weaker legs despite the stretching I have done instructed by my friend and personal trainer Colin Wycherley. It’s still great fun.

i still have a lot to reflect on about the end of this ride. But yes I am planning to do it again if fit enough in ten years!

 

Press Release – Cycling surgeon and daughter complete American challenge for @WaterAidUK

Father and daughter duo, Chris and Catherine Oliver, have almost completed an intense and gruelling 3,415-mile cycle ride across America in aid of international charity WaterAid.

The pair left Los Angeles on 11 May and will ride into Boston on 28 June. After nearly seven weeks of intense riding they can’t wait to reach the finish line.

They have now reached their fundraising target of £ 3,415 – representing £1 for WaterAid for every mile they have cycled.

The achievement is especially incredible for Chris, an orthopaedic surgeon at Edinburgh’s Royal Infirmary, who just a few years ago weighed over 27 stone and struggled to complete the most basic exercise.

The route took Chris and Catherine along the Rockies, through the Mojave desert, across the Midwest and the Great Lakes, and finally over the Appalachian Mountains before reaching Boston on Friday 28 June.

Chris said: “Crossing through the Mojave desert was the most challenging part. The temperatures reached 119 degrees plus (48oC); it was like riding in an oven. It made us realise just how important water is in the desert.

“The most fun part was the hills in Missouri; we did 148 roller coaster hills in one day with 5,000 feet of climbing over 80 miles.

“Getting enough food was also a challenge for me. Even though I had my gastric band adjusted before I left I still didn’t want to eat. I’m using over 6000 calories a day and I need to make this up somehow, but it’s still a real challenge for me to consume enough food.”

Chris also struggled with altitude sickness when crossing the Rockies – but managed to recover quickly and continue the challenge.

Catherine, 22, a graduate environmental geography student previously at the University of York, said: “Staying hydrated has been a challenge, especially through the desert where we were literally having water poured over us every 20 miles or so. The water on our backs was for drinking and the water bottles on our bikes were for pouring over our arms, legs and head to keep cool whilst cycling.”

Water has been vital to Chris and Catherine on this trip, and not only when crossing the valley. Chris says: “Every 15 minutes cycling we’re supposed to drink to keep up hydration. Why shouldn’t everyone in the world have the luxury of drinking every 15 minutes if they want to? We are very glad to have raised money for WaterAid.”

Sarah Walker, Community and Events Manager for WaterAid, said: “Congratulations to Chris and Catherine for completing such an impressive challenge for WaterAid. It can cost as little as £15 to ensure one person has a lifetime access to clean water and improved sanitation, so their efforts could potentially transform the lives of more than 225 people.”

Chris made the decision to lose weight during a business trip to China in 2006. Chris said: “I was at the Great Wall of China and was so unfit that I couldn’t manage to get up ten steps. I decided then that I wanted to do something.”

The following year, Chris had a gastric band fitted: “Obesity is a massive societal problem and people do need support. Bariatric surgery is not for everyone, but it’s a tool to help you change your life. It helped me to lose weight, and return to exercise. Now my patients don’t even recognise me I’ve changed so much.”

Chris has since lost 170 pounds and completed many impressive challenges, including triathlons and cycling from Land’s End to John O’Groats. Having conquered the UK, he set his sights on America with his daughter.

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Chris will return home on 2 July and Catherine will return home on 8 July. For more information, photos, or interviews, please contact Laura Crowley: lauracrowley@wateraid.org / 020 7793 4965.

Notes to Editors

WaterAid’s vision is of a world where everyone has access to safe water and sanitation. The international organisation works in 27 countries across Africa, Asia and the Pacific region to transform lives by improving access to safe water, hygiene and sanitation in some of the world’s poorest communities. Since 1981, WaterAid has reached 17.5 million people with safe water and, since 2004, 12.9 million people with sanitation. For more information, visit www.wateraid.org , follow @wateraiduk on Twitter or visit us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/wateraid

• Around 2,000 children die every day from diseases caused by dirty water and poor sanitation.
• 768 million people in the world live without safe water. This is roughly one in eight of the world’s population.
• 2.5 billion people live without sanitation; this is 39% of the world’s population.
• For every £1 invested in water and sanitation, an average of £4 is returned in increased productivity.
• Just £15 can enable one person to access a lasting supply of safe water, improved hygiene and sanitation.

Only Ten More Cycling Days until Boston

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Ten more cycling days until we reach Boston: Ride, Sleep, Eat, has become a way of life. Today quite a hard day cycling across hilly Ohio, lots of climbing through Amish homesteads, village of Funk was memorable with Amish children asking us about our ride.

Don’t Quit

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When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,
When the road you’re trudging seems all uphill,
When the funds are low and the debts are high,
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit,
Rest, if you must, but don’t you quit.

Life is queer with its twists and turns,
As every one of us sometimes learns,
And many a failure turns about,
When he might have won had he stuck it out;
Don’t give up though the pace seems slow–
You may succeed with another blow.

Often the goal is nearer than,
It seems to a faint and faltering man,
Often the struggler has given up,
When he might have captured the victor’s cup,
And he learned too late when the night slipped down,
How close he was to the golden crown.

Success is failure turned inside out–
The silver tint of the clouds of doubt,
And you never can tell how close you are,
It may be near when it seems so far,
So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit–
It’s when things seem worst that you must not quit.

– Author unknown

My Bike is my Psychiatrist @blondiheatherX

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Yesterday had a very pleasant but probing BBC Radio Scotland Interview with Heather Suttie for a forthcoming program (to be broadcast in June sometime) on “The Day I Changed My Life”. This was a bit more than some of the interviews I have done on my weight loss. Reflecting afterwards was a bit like an episode of “in the Psychiatrists Chair”, I did not mind at all, but the interview bought back my whole life and my relentless battle with obesity and getting back to fitness. Amazingly I have stayed mostly sane and have had great support from my wife Jo and my daughters. I still have “stuff” to think through. I do not think the battle will ever go away. I’m sure all the bike riding has kept me from getting depressed, probably all those endorphins when not able to eat. We discussed a lot of issues relating to the day, diet, obesity stigma, work, exercise, adventure, mechanics of the bariatric surgery and death. Significantly the clock is ticking Certainly think its time to write another bucket list of things to do,