A Dublin fitness fanatic who underwent a life-saving heart transplant is about to embark on a gruelling 21km adventure race for the third time.
Father-of-two Ken Mulkerrins (40) has proved that donor recipients are capable of extraordinary feats after operations.
He will take part in a Quest Adventure Race in Glendalough today which involves a 12km cycle, 8km run and 1km swim.
The Lucan man, who spoke to the Herald in Organ Donor Awareness Week, said that he was always into sport and fitness - despite being born with a congenital heart disease.
As a baby he underwent successful open-heart surgery, which made a huge difference to his childhood and meant he could enjoy sport like his peers.
"I enjoyed a normal, active childhood and was always passionate about sport," he said. "For almost 10 years I competed as a member of the Irish Freestyle Kayaking Team.
"However, in 2001, my health took a nosedive when I was struck down with Weil's disease, a bacteria which I caught from kayaking in the Liffey."
After undergoing a successful operation, Mr Mulkerrins fell ill once again in 2015 - diagnosed with end-stage heart failure.
"I was told that I would need a heart transplant. This was a very worrying and bleak time for me and my family as my heart continued to get weaker.
"I was called seven times about a potential donor heart, and seven times it emerged that the heart was incompatible. Finally, on the eighth occasion, we had a match," he said.
Following his operation, the Dubliner says his road to recovery has been incredible, adding: "I feel more energetic now than I ever did in my life."
The Irish Kidney Association has urged people to talk to their families about their organ donation wishes.