Wheel of Life – Entrepreneurs share their cycling and adventure stories

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To say that entrepreneurs have busy schedules would be an understatement, but why live a mundane life? Everyone should have the luxury of enjoying life. While the definition of gratuity differs from entrepreneur to entrepreneur, there are some where getting behind the wheel is the greatest benefit. Well, in case you are thinking that we are talking about expensive bikes let us tell you that these people believe in cycling and the satisfaction they get from riding is beyond what words can explain.

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Unparalleled freedom

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What could be better than a moment when you experience pure freedom? For George Muthoot George, General Manager – Muthoot Leisure & Hospitality Services, biking is a getaway. “From the moment I learned to ride a bike, I’ve enjoyed this feeling of freedom that’s hard to describe,” George shares. Outdoors by nature, George enjoys traveling to remote areas. Growing up in New Delhi, he used to cycle his BSA land through the city.

“On weekends, I spent entire days cycling the streets of central Delhi with no particular destination in mind. I discovered that Kerala has a lot of enthusiastic cyclists and a number of informal and formal clubs that organize treks to various destinations. It further strengthened my determination to continue cycling, and given the beauty of the place, I feel like I discovered the best place to cycle.

Positivity and transformation

Everyone pursues something that provides peace of mind and that’s how cycling became a hobby for Vishwas Ghai, MD and founder of the Servo Hospitality School. “Cycling turns me on because every time I ride a bike it provides me with a true essence of life, an opportunity to look at the world from a different perspective,” Ghai shares. To stay disciplined to his routine, he goes out twice a week on his bike and enjoys the fresh early morning air that he experiences between the jungle trails or the winding roads of the Shivalik.

Ghai tags cycling with a positive change. “For me, cycling is like a meditation or a way to recreate myself every time I ride a bike,” he says.

Calibration of a healthy mind and body

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Cycling allows you to discover yourself and this is what Dr Pablo Erat, Co-founder and Partner of Pioneering Ventures, investor and passionate triathlete loves cycling.

“The ability to get out into nature but also to experience this constant hard work outside the comfort zone brings real progress and tangible results,” says Erat, who discovered cycling through triathlon. “When I started playing this sport in 2005, I was an embarrassing bad cyclist and barely had the power to climb hills. However, I did not quit, but took it as a challenge and developed a unique drive to improve myself. I trained for two hours every night on a stationary bike for six months and realized how quickly my condition and muscle power improved. In a few years cycling has become my greatest sporting ability and today on the bike I am one of the fastest triathlon runners in the world. My strong point would be mental strength and pain tolerance, ”he adds.

Like all enthusiasts, his favorite cycling moment is the Swiss ultramarathon cycling championship which covers around 1200 km around Switzerland with 12 km of vertical drop. “I participated with my wife Lucia in the couples category where we won the Swiss championship. It was the best experience together on so many levels emotionally, physically and psychologically. For him, cycling is one of the healthiest forms of exercise (except in the event of a fall).

Need of speed

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For some, speed has always been a determining factor and what better way to experience it than a bike? Baqar Nasser, Director, Topsin India Healthcare, Ubercare Wellness & Fitness loved cycling more than any other sport. So much so that this fascination drove him to pioneer indoor cycling as training in India, when he started working.

“I loved the speed on the bike and found it very stimulating and super fun with a feeling of freedom,” he says. Cycling brought major changes in Nasser’s life. “When I became national champion for the third time in a row despite a serious injury, which I overcame despite the doctors who said otherwise. I also received the Best Rider Award from All India University out of 24,000 participants, after which I was sent to America to represent India. It was there that I discovered Spinning and became a Certified Spinning Instructor. I realized that anyone and everyone could turn without fear of crashing and injuring themselves. I realized that this could be a great fitness mantra because you can burn a lot more calories in a single spinning session compared to other fitness regimes. More than anything, I was able to transform my passion into work and raise awareness about the benefits of cycling.

For him, cycling is a question of speed, freedom, autonomy, style, excitement, electrification! It is a passion that comes from the heart!

Fuel the winning spirit

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Cycling is an activity that puts you in control of your pace, speed and schedule. There is no fuss, it is about letting the spirit in when it comes to riding. It’s a great way to relax and be distracted from the things that bother you.

More so, for entrepreneurs who are often engulfed in finding ways to solve the problems they face in running their business on a daily basis. Dhananjay Singh, co-founder of Sqrrl Investments & Savings App is a true supporter of cycling because it helps me stave off the blues. He likes to start his day early and riding a bike is something he loves, especially in the morning. Cycling is something that keeps him energized all day. “The best thing about cycling is that it makes me relive my childhood,” he says.

“I rediscovered myself with cycling, I made very good lifelong friends and, above all, I extracted the child from myself who did not sleep all night when a cycle was presented for the first time in seventh grade, ”says.

After a simple routine, Singh pushes himself on the weekends. He starts his day at 4 a.m. and enjoys being in nature or on a trail. He loves all the trails of Aravalis and he also has a memory of having climbed the trail of the feeders in the Aravalis on the side of the village.

“The incline is over 45 degrees over 100m with turns. I had the feeling that I will make the climb one day without getting off my bike. It took six months of cycling experience and skills to achieve this. And it was really great once I realized the same. I was really, really exciting, ”he says.

Over the years, cycling has been more of a psychological game for him than a physical one. It taught him many life lessons and fueled his winning spirit.

(This article first appeared in the July 2019 issue of Entrepreneur magazine. To subscribe, click here)


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