A HAMPSHIRE man is about to embark on a challenge that will see him cover the equivalent distance of travelling to New York by running, swimming, and cycling.

Keith Diaper, from Hedge End, is setting about his challenge to cover 3,655 miles over 52 events.

Starting on Saturday, Keith will complete one middle distance triathlon every Saturday and Sunday for six months.

The 40-year-old is taking on the challenge to raise money for the hypermobility syndrome association. Keith’s wife Pippa, 34, has been diagnosed with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, which causes her joints to dislocate on a regular basis.

Keith, an electrician, said: “She is in daily pain and suffers with fatigue. There is currently no cure for EDS and there is a possibility that she will one day be in a wheelchair. My mission is to bring wider awareness of the work of HMSA and the conditions suffered by so many.

“I know we currently can’t cure this condition, but we can educate people. If my challenge helps people who are in the situation my wife found herself in, then it would be worth it.”

Over 52 events, Keith will be completing a 1.2-mile swim, a 56-mile cycle followed by a 13.1 mile run, a feat he doesn’t think has been attempted before.

He said: “This challenge will push my body and mind to the limit. I have been training for over a year for this with the assistance of Southampton Solent University’s sports science department, who will be supporting me with advice.

“It has never been done before so we have no idea who it will affect my body. I have a time plan to stick to in order to keep me in the best shape so I can recover. It will be more a mental battle than a physical one.”

Pippa’s condition took three years to determine.

Keith said: “The health professionals carried out many tests but thought she had a different condition due to a few similar symptoms.

“After many more visits to specialists over an almost three-year period, she was finally diagnosed with EDS.

“She is such an inspiration and pushes through her pain and holds down a full-time job as a teacher and with our six-year-old daughter Isabella.

“Her stubbornness to push through and not let this condition win does take its toll, and it’s this side of her that drives me to make sure I will complete this challenge.”

To donate, visit www.ironcause.co.uk/donate