AN IT expert is swapping brains for brawn to raise money for a children’s hospice.

Simon Turtington will be one of the 1,900 people to take on the ultimate endurance challenge Ironman UK in Bolton.

The 38-year-old, who works at Champion Accountants in Worsley, will swim, cycle and run for up to 17 back-breaking hours to raise money for Francis House Children’s Hospice in Didsbury, Manchester.

Mr Turtington, from Lowton, said: “It’s hard to get out of bed some days, but if you don’t put in the training, you won’t complete it.

“Luckily, I’ve got an understanding wife and kids.

I’ve done triathlons before, but never anything like this.”

He is training six days a week, running at 6am before travelling to work.

The 10th Ironman UK, which is will be held in Bolton and the surrounding area on July 20, has seen an unprecedented demand for places.

The challenge involves a 2.4- mile swim, 112-mile bike ride and 26.2-mile marathon.

Mr Turtington said: “I’m lucky that because it’s so close to home I can train on the course.

“I’ll know all the different routes, where to slow down on my bike and when I’ll have to be out of the saddle climbing.

“I’ve been a spectator at the Ironman and the atmosphere is unbelievable.”

He has provided IT services to the charity that gives end-of-life and respite care to more than 240 children and young people.

Mr Turtington said: “Francis House is not a sad place — there is obviously sadness but you tend not to focus on it.”

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