Cancer survivor walks 37 miles with ball and chain to raise awareness
PUBLISHED: 14:03 16 November 2018 | UPDATED: 14:57 16 November 2018
A man who fought testicular cancer has walked a gruelling 60km with a ball and chain to demonstrate the mental strain of fighting the illness.
Chris Watts trudged through treacherous conditions from Great Yarmouth, through Weavers’ Way, to North Walsham to raise money for his Movember campaign.
The 24-year-old strapped a 14kg weight to his backpack and trekked through the muddied conditions, with the cast iron ball dragging behind him.
“This ball and chain is not only for testicular cancer, but it’s also for mental health – I have a lot of friends who struggle with their mental health,” Mr Watts said.
Mr Watts has dedicated the money raised towards Cancer Research UK and Youth Cancer Trust.
When he was diagnosed in June this year, Mr Watts was treated and had a radical orchidectomy surgery within eight days.
At the time, he was in the thick of running his start-up tech company - NumberEight.
“I had to quickly dash out of the room every time my phone rang in case it was about my treatment. Sometimes I was asked to come to the hospital immediately, other times it was just for general admin.
“Despite this weight, I had to keep moving forwards with my life,” he said.
“You have to put this all behind you and keeping ploughing ahead. It really does feel like you’re being weighed down,” he said.
The hike was documented live via Facebook throughout the two-day hike.
“By the 45th kilometre, I hit my wall. I had blood blisters on my toes, my hamstrings were barely working, and my hip flexors were trembling, but through the mental training of my rowing days I was able to keep putting one foot in front of the other and count down the kilometres until the finish,” he said.
Last Saturday, Mr Watts began his journey at Great Yarmouth, and walked east following the River Thurne to Potter Heigham.
The next day he completed the gruelling journey to North Walsham, so he could lay down his poppy for Remembrance Day.
“Overall, the walk has been a huge success and I really feel like I’ve made a significant accomplishment.
“My donation page is open until the end of Movember, but I don’t think I can run any more outrageous challenges before then.
“For now, I’m just going to continue growing my moustache,” he said. To donate, visit https://mobro.co/thewhat