Quick and Easy: The Stephan Challenge

When Mark Stephan went bicycling with his friends on the morning of August 11, 2007, he never imagined that it would be a day that changed his life.


During the ride, the front tire of his bike disengaged, throwing him over the handlebars and causing him to hit his head full force against the pavement. His neck snapped, and his doctors informed him that life in a wheelchair was the best he could expect.

Mark refused to accept his fate. He began therapy at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC) and shocked everyone by walking out of the hospital less than five months after the accident under his own power. He continued to work with RIC, combining therapy, personal training and clinical studies. All of his work paid off, and he completed an incredible achievement, climbing 103 floors to the top of the tallest building in North America, the Willis Tower.

Now Mark is tackling another challenge, cycling 3,129 miles across the southern United States in 75 days. His journey, called the Stephan Challenge, began April 15th and is a fundraiser for RIC. You can donate through his site, or join Mark on his journey as he completes this unbelievable race.