Man to complete 31 triathlons in 31 days to raise money for prostate charity

Man to complete 31 triathlons in 31 days to raise money for prostate charity
Russell Cager, 55, from Rugby is to complete 31 triathlons in 31 days for Prostate Cancer UK (Russell Cager)
Russell Cager

A prostate cancer survivor is attempting to complete 31 triathlons in 31 days for charity and hopes to encourage men to regularly check their prostate “as a matter of routine”.

Russell Cager, 55, from Rugby in Warwickshire, will take on 31 Olympic distance triathlons by completing a 1.5km swim, a 40km bike ride and a 10km run every day in January – all while juggling his day job as a mortgage adviser.

Mr Cager, who is raising money for Prostate Cancer UK, hopes his challenge will raise awareness and help men recognise the symptoms of prostate cancer after he was diagnosed with the disease.

Man running on treadmillRussell Cager will swim 1.5km, cycle 40km and run 10km every day in January to raise money for Prostate Cancer UK (Russell Cager)

“Don’t ignore (the symptoms) and even if you feel fine, get yourself tested as a matter of routine,” he told the PA news agency.

Mr Cager also hopes to break the stigma about testing and aims to reassure men the procedure is easy and non-invasive.

He said: “Don’t be frightened of getting yourself tested because it’s just taking a blood test now or peeing onto a stick, and it could save your life.”

Mr Cager said he was diagnosed after getting his friends together in December 2022 to encourage them to get tests.

“I said ‘let’s go for a curry, let’s go for a beer and make it a social event, but let’s do something positive about our health and get ourselves tested’,” Mr Cager said.

“We sat down at the table after we did the blood test and there were eight people and one of them said, ‘the statistics are one in eight’ so there was a chance one of us around this table, if the statistics are correct, has got prostate cancer.”

A day after meeting his friends, doctors told Mr Cager his PSA test needed investigating and he underwent a series of tests between January and March 2023 before a biopsy in April 2023 confirmed his cancer diagnosis.

“It was confirmed at stage three, so I had a choice of chemotherapy or getting removed and straight away I said, ‘get it out, get it removed’,” he said.

“Then four weeks later I was in the theatre, at the end of May, having my prostate cancer removed through keyhole surgery.”

Despite his illness, Mr Cager said he was not burdened by his diagnosis.

He said: “I just thought I’ve got this thing inside me it needs to come out, get it out and then we’ll carry on.

“I’ve never felt ill and I’ve never felt threatened by it.”

Man dressed in a Prostate Cancer UK sports shirtRussell Cager hopes his triathlon challenge will raise awareness of the risks of prostate cancer and encourage them to regularly check their prostate (Russell Cager)

Mr Cager hopes to raise awareness about the symptoms after he experienced increased bladder movements, but did not believe they were related to his cancer.

He explained: “When I had (the PSA) test and it was a positive test or it needed to be investigated, at no point did I feel like the symptoms were there for me to set the alarm bells.

“That’s the worry, I think, for most men is that they don’t realise it.”

Since sharing his prostate cancer journey on Facebook, Mr Cager said the support from the public has been “overwhelming”, particularly after it prompted his friends to take a test, three of whom were later diagnosed with the disease.

Mr Cager is a week into his challenge and has already raised more than £3,000 of his £5,000 target, but hopes to surpass his the mark before the end of the month.

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