Ryan Nichols, a quadriplegic, has traveled 776 Miles in 11 days, from S.L.C. Utah to Huntington Beach, California during the "Invictus Tour" -setting the world record for the Longest handcycle ride.
"Invictus Tour" ride was for the benefit of two charities which help physically challenged athletes and disabled sports programs — The Challenged Athletes Foundation and the Goodwill Fitness Center of Orange County. 100% of the contributions raised will go directly to the charities.
Ryan Nichols said he was inspired by a motivational speaker he met when he was injured in 1993. "Maybe someone's watching this who is going through something challenging, whether it's physical or emotional, and can see the same way that art impacted me. Or maybe a little bit of that can rub off on them as well," Nichols said.
A car accident paralyzed Ryan Nichols 15 years ago. Nichols and his fiancee had just mailed out their wedding invitations when tragedy struck. He was involved in an accident where his car rolled and he was thrown out.
A few months later, he saw a story about Art Bert, a fellow quadriplegic, who was propelling his handcycle from Salt Lake to St. George.
The two became friends. "I said one day, ‘I'll get stronger and more able to do it. I want to do the same ride.' He challenged me. He said, ‘You should do the same ride but go farther,'" Nichols said.
Art Berg set a record by pushing his race chair 325 miles back in 1993. He died in 2002.
Ryan Nichols works as a pharmaceutical representative. His company outfitted him with a van, and at age 37, he has learned to live independently. He is basically self-sufficient, living alone and enjoying life in an apartment about two and a half miles from the beach.
Now, after nearly two years of training, Ryan Nichols repeated his friend's journey of 70 miles a day.