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Knoxville man loses 100 pounds while riding for kids' cancer research

jon treffert
Jon Treffert; image submitted


Jon Treffert of Knoxville is riding 500 miles in September as part of the Great Cycle Challenge USA (GCC), a month-long event benefiting Children’s Cancer Research Fund.

Jon began his biking journey in November 2017 when he invested in an e-bike as a means to get healthier. At the time he weighed 267 and was managing his Type 2 diabetes with medication. To help keep himself motivated, Jon biked in his first GCC in 2018 after learning about the event through his Facebook feed. Like his fellow riders, he set up personal mileage and fundraising goals - 500 miles and $500. But, by the end of his challenge, he was down 44 pounds, kept his blood sugars in check, ridden more than 1,000 miles, and raised more than $2,500.

When the GCC rolled around again in 2019, he was down to his goal weight of 167 and reversed his diabetes. He’s been able to keep the weight off and is now riding this September in his third challenge as a GCC Champion. Readers/Viewers can support Jon by making a donation to his rider page here or by signing up for the Challenge themselves at

Now in its sixth year, the GCC hopes to raise $10 million and secure 100,000 riders from all 50 states. The GCC has always been virtual - even before virtual events became a thing - where riders ride when and however they can (even on a stationary bike), setting both fundraising and mileage goals for what they think they can accomplish in September.

Treffert, 63, has spent most of his career in medical technology “detecting cancer or treating it.” Riding in the GCC is his way of giving back as well as honoring Caitlin Duncan, a member of his church family who was diagnosed with brain cancer at the age of 16 and who passed later at the age of 23. It is also a way to stay in shape while inspiring others to do the same, one pedal at a time.

Published September 1, 2020

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