“It all started the day I saw a colleague of mine ride a cycle to work. I was so intrigued by this that I started riding a cycle to work myself. In 2011, I started to cycle every morning in my neighborhood, to bring in an element of fitness in life. Soon, word spread around, more people joined and we became a group of friends who would wake up every morning at 5 to cycle. We would explore the neighboring areas in weekdays and go on longer rides during weekends.
It was a good time and we evolved into a Facebook group with a close knit circle of members, called “West Chennai Cycling Group”. Two years into this, a lull fell over the activities as I started to train for other events like triathlons. After 6 months, I began to take active interest in reviving the group.
We became a focused set of members who rode every morning for about 25-30 kms and dedicated one day to core strengthening exercises. I would keep updating the group with photos of the day and slowly, members from other areas wanted to join in as well.
So, we segregated the group into different chapters pertaining to different areas and so far we have around 11 chapters currently active. Owing to the popularity and growth of the group, we renamed it as ‘We are Chennai Cycling Group’ which now hosts 12,000 plus members and counting. We conduct endurance, racing and challenge events and have a yearly plan in place. We dedicate 2 months in a year for off-roading and exploration and also plan an international Cycling trip every year.
The dream for me personally, is to make Chennai a bicycle friendly city in the world. Owing to the fact that we are all stranded in this giant unforeseeable pandemic, I would urge everyone to introspect their choices and lean towards a planet friendly alternative – the Bicycle. Apart from giving us numerous health benefits, it would help leave a better future in place for the upcoming generation.”
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