Indian Cyclists Network

start them young... and watch them go!

i am totally blown by my kids.... their enthusiasm, their energy and their endurance!!

Pankaj (12yrs) has been cycling with me regularly (100-150 kms weekly) in the last 4 months, but hadn't done more than 50 kms in a day. Rohit (14 yrs) hasn't cycled for 5-6 months and also hasn't done more than 50 before this. both have been riding with me for many yrs and started long country rides about 4-5 yrs back. apart from slowly building up their physical ability, which is tangible, their mental strength (an intangible quality) had also been growing and i for one believe that endurance is in the head.

last week they cycled 80 kms to kamshet and back with me. the ride to Kamshet was literally a breeze. we left early to avoid riding back in the heat. both were faster than me and had to be told over and over not to get right out of my sight. Kamshet is at exactly 40 kms, we stopped for some b'fast and headed back. Pankaj decided he was headed home and no need to wait for me and i did not see him again till i got home! I was worried sick all the way back, for all practical purposes he was riding alone, and i was really mad at him. It was only closer to home, that it struck me that this was an intrinsic quality of cycling.... the feeling of independence and confidence that comes from riding! and i endorse it heartily, scary though it was for me as his mom. Ironically i was forced to recognize that i still freak my mom out when i go off riding to goa etc on my own! He was of course given a lecture about safety etc and let off. Anyhow they both returned quite unfazed by the ride, grabbed their TT rackets and left.

Their sights were now turned to bigger things... triple digits!! they were keen to get on the other side of 100!! our plan to go to Lonavala and back last Sunday had to be postponed because of me and that really did not sit well with them. so finally i figured let's get this out of the way.... and planned it for yesterday, a Tuesday, cancelled a couple of classes they had and set off... Lonavala or bust!! we left late unfortunately, past 7:30, and had to stop often for small issues with the cycles. the boys were tiring by the time we reached. after b'fast we turned back... it at almost noon!! both times i told them they had a choice of cycling thru kamshet village to avoid the ghat and both times they chose to do the uphill so they could enjoy the downhill. we bore the searing heat all the way back, stopping often for "panch rupaya ka nimboo paani". This time Rohit took it upon himself to disappear from my sights. Finally at Talegaon i told him to carry on alone and be safe! 112kms DONE!!


Now they've set their sights on the 200 km BRM!!

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Comment by Divya Tate on March 26, 2010 at 4:29pm
wow hufeza... that's great! i'd love for the boys to meet each other.
@ zubbin... thanx i totally agree, there are too many easiy lazy options to pass the time and kids are getting unfit.
@ anil... don't worry about brand and all for you kid jsut yet, any bike is good enough now and you will have to keep buying bigger ones so don't waste your money. after he is 8-9 look for a good option, agin not to expensive as you will have to go even bigger as he grows.
@ satish... :-)
Comment by Huzefa M Electricwala on March 26, 2010 at 11:49am
Nice write up Divya. An inspiration to me. My 13yr old son is a State level cyclist. On training days he rides about 30-40kms everyday & on weekends he does around 100kms. I have been to a few 50+ km rides with him & plan to do longer ones in the near future. Would love to do the 200km BRM with him. He has been cycling seriously since he was 10yrs old.
Comment by campcrafters india on March 26, 2010 at 8:12am
superb! congratulations! to both the boys and you ofcourse!!. If we had more parents like us then there would be less kids conquering gaming consoles and getting obese.
Fabulous to say the least. Young kids like these always make me feel proud of their achievments.
Comment by anil kumar on March 25, 2010 at 1:59pm
thats great divya,
congrats to the family. would be interesting to note the kids' progress.
can u give me any input on starting my 5 yr old son. he is doing a bit of cycling but any good brand of cycle for kids.
thanks
Comment by Divya Tate on March 24, 2010 at 8:10pm
actually i have used a couple, but both sourced from the US so brand etc not much use to you. i have a preference for the rack that clamps onto the rear boot or hatchback of car, it is easy to load and unload compared to the racks that sit on top of the car.
alpesh, rider owned in KP, in pune has them on and off and may be able to get one for you, but i suggest you chek with dealers in bombay!
Comment by Ash on March 24, 2010 at 12:42pm
I am looking for a cycle rack for my i10. please suggest what brand and type do you own?
Comment by Divya Tate on March 24, 2010 at 12:28pm
thanks rama.
how lovely ash. great that she loves it. it will happen slowly with your persistence. in a few years you can start transporting her and bike to a park or garden with less traffic so she can enjoy longer rides. it was only after they turned 8 or 9 that i let them onto the roads, and even then only country roads. if she continues to enjoy riding it would be a good idea to invest in a cycle rack. i found it most useful to take the boys and thier bikes out or the crazy city traffic and then do long stretches in the countryside.
keep riding!
Comment by Ash on March 24, 2010 at 11:35am
Amazing.... well written and I guess it sounds so good, casue it was actully that good.. ( as a experience)

I have started off with my 3 1/2 yr old daughter in a little way.. got her a small Pink bike.. she loves to ride, still uses the balancing wheels.. But I hope she takes it up fast...on her own..

Look forward to ride with her..

And now I know where I can draw inspiration from...will read her this story for bedtime today..
Comment by Rama on March 24, 2010 at 11:29am
Hats off to you!
And young Pankaj and Rohit.
Your kids obviously take after mom.
Am constantly amazed and inspired by you.
Rama

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