Vlad Volynsky is Biking From Washington State to Boston for Charity

He's aiming to raise $10,000 to go toward heart disease research.

Vlad Volynsky

Vlad Volynsky with his bike. Photo provided to bostonmagazine.com

Nothing can stop Vlad Volynsky.

The Microsoft infrastructure specialist is biking solo across the country, from Washington State to Boston, to raise money for the American Heart Association, and he’s not letting anything—hail storms, 30-mph headwinds, work calls, even the interview for this article—slow him down.

“I haven’t stopped for a day for three weeks,” Volynsky says. “I’m listening to my body, and so far it tells me go, go, go. So I’m going.”

Inspired to start his fundraiser by the prevalence of heart disease in his own family and worldwide, Volynsky has so far raised $2,200 toward his goal of $10,000. He left Westport, Washington, on May 16 and hopes to reach Boston by the end of July, an impressive goal—at the time of this interview, he was in South Dakota.

And although the idea of biking more than 3,500 miles by yourself sounds daunting, Volynsky swears it’s not as bad as it seems. “I ride all day long, I visit places, I stop by towns, I talk to people, I enjoy the scenery. I’m still connected to my work—I participate in the meetings,” he says. “It’s not as isolated as it sounds. I’m living my dream.”

Volynsky’s schedule is grueling, beginning each morning around 6 a.m. and riding until weather or darkness forces him off his bike, sometimes as late as 9 p.m. Plus, besides the aforementioned headwinds and hail storms, he’s already encountered heavy rain and a funnel cloud.

“You cannot predict the weather, you cannot predict the road construction, you cannot predict technical difficulties, all the way to physical abilities and body inability,” he says. “You need to be able to ride every day, long distances, and repeat this every day and keep going.”

He still has more than 2,000 miles left in his journey, but Volynsky says he’s already thinking about his arrival in Boston daily. “I’m looking forward to that emotion that every athlete is feeling when he crosses the finish line,” he says. “It’s a rewarding moment, and it’s worth every day of this ride.”

To donate to Volynsky’s fundraiser or check his progress, visit his website or Facebook page.