Cruisin’ the Crossroads to raise funds for MS research


By Rick Morwick

Mingzhou Nie is an avid runner who took up bicycling two months ago to benefit a good cause.

A Carmel resident, Nie is one of 300 area cyclists who will ride in the Sept. 8 “Bike MS: Cruisin’ the Crossroads” national fundraiser for people affected by multiple sclerosis.

Presented locally by Salesforce, “Cruisin’ the Crossroads” is one of 80 rides across the U.S. hosted by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Nie, part of the Salesforce Corporate Team, is among 80,000-plus riders participating in the national event.

He has already secured more than $1,000 in pledges. The local ride has a collective goal of $125,000.

“I guess I have a bunch of friends who are passionate about helping others and are excited about cycling,” said Nie, who has a friend and neighbor who suffers from MS, a disabling disease of the central nervous system.

A member of the Carmel Runners Club, Nie, 46, took up running in 2015 and regularly participates in weekend runs with the group. For the MS ride, he created a cross-training plan that incorporates cycling into his weekly running routine.

“Although they use different muscle groups, running helps benefit my cardio, which will benefit my cycling,” Nie said. “I have been training for ‘Cruisin’ the Crossroads’ for about two months now.”

With route options of 25, 50, 75 and 100 miles, the ride begins and ends at the Boone County 4-H Fairgrounds, 1300 100 S in Lebanon. Start time is 8 a.m.

“Bike MS is an experience grounded in camaraderie that brings together cyclists of all levels for one reason, to create a world free of MS,” said Beverly Stafford, executive director of the Indiana chapter of the National MS Society. “Funds raised from this event support cutting-edge MS research as well as programs and services for people living with MS in this community.”

Most MS sufferers are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50. It affects more than 2.3 million people worldwide, with symptoms ranging from numbness and tingling to blindness and paralysis.

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