The very prospect of sharing a tent with bugs, spiders, possible snakes, frogs and lizards whilst trekking coast to coast across Costa Rica and its rainforest would be enough to make most of us tremble. Let alone all the training required to lose nearly two stone in weight and be fit enough for the 240km walk and a 2400m volcano climb.

That’s the challenge PureComms Chief Executive Officer Rob Vivian has set himself to raise money for Children’s Hospice South West (CHSW) and – with less than two months to go – he looks set to make the start line.

Which is no mean feat in itself. As a self-confessed wildlife lover who collects exotic fish and reptiles, it’s not the flora and fauna that worry Rob but the demanding fitness test required.

“I’ve had to lose some serious weight to be allowed to take part and that’s meant dieting and exercising hard since January,” he said. “Whilst battling creepy crawlies and wrangling snakes is pretty standard stuff for me, trekking in near 100% humidity at a rate of 20-25km a day is definitely not! So far, I’ve shed just under a stone and a half and converted a similar amount of what is left to muscle. I’ve got another half a stone to lose before November but am on course to do that.”

It’s fair to say that Rob enjoys a challenge. Last year, for example, he defied his fear of heights by scaling Kinabalu, at 4101m Borneo’s tallest mountain – raising thousands of pounds for CHSW in the process.

“As a company with offices in Bristol and St Austell, my team and I really appreciate the important work Children’s Hospice South West does,” he said. “I fund myself so 100% of the sponsorship donations I receive go directly to the charity. Anyone who knows me is aware how much I love my food so preparing for this trek has demanded a lot of will power. It’s a small price to pay, though, for helping make a difference.”

Joining Rob on his trip will be his good friend and fellow fundraiser Chris Hall (pictured (left) with Rob).

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