From an overweight diabetic to an active cyclist– Ajinkya Chandane

I still remember it was just a week before my 24th birthday due to some health issues I had a blood sugar level test done and I found out that I’ve been diagnosed with Diabetes and my sugar level was above 300. It was a big shock for me and my family. I came home totally depressed that “Damn.. I am just going to be 24 and I have diabetes”. I started taking the medicines prescribed by my doctor. A week later It was my birthday and I was not excited at all I was smiling on the outside but deep down I knew I was getting depressed. I managed to come home on time from office to my surprise two of my cousins had come over to wish me, talking to them made me a little fresh and something just clicked. 

It was high time to make changes to my current lifestyle of having junk food all the time, not exercising, drinking almost every weekend, stress from work and overthinking almost everything. So on that day I promised myself that I am going to change my lifestyle and this diabetes is not going to stop me. So I decided to quit drinking, sugar and all the junk and fried food and started doing basic exercises at home. With in a month with the help of medications my sugar levels were within 150, this bought me some relief but I was not satisfied, I did not want to take medication for the rest of my life. That’s where I got to know that my cousin Pratik Ramdharne has started cycling,

 I had found my solution. A few memories flashed back, I used to cycle when I was in school, going for tuitions on my cycle. So I thought Why not start cycling again. I contacted my brother and telling him that I was going to buy a new bicycle, a month of searching and deciding which one to buy, I stumbled upon a cycle in my building, to my surprise it was my neighbour’s a very good Trek MTB which was lying in my society compound for years attracting dust and cobwebs, I decided to ask my neighbour, He readily agreed. I became too excited washed the bike removed all the dust and cobwebs and got it serviced it was my first bike with gears.

A few days later in October I started cycling but just to get fit, lose some weight and get my sugar levels in check. The first day I rode about 6 kms with a friend and it was an amazing feeling and I decided to  start riding every day. Even though having a hectic work schedule and travelling of 4 hrs everyday leaving for work at 7:30 am and reaching home back by 10pm after work, I started getting up at 4:45 am in the morning and go for a small ride of 6 to 7 kms everyday days and within a couple of month I was riding about 10kms on weekdays and about 30kms on weekends. 

Seeing my progress Pratik suggested me to join ECC (Everest Cycling Culture) so I messaged AbdulRab Kazi (A.K.A Kazi Bhai) on Facebook the Founder of ECC that I wished to join the group. ECC has a few ground rules about their rides Helmets and lights are compulsory. So I could not join ECC in December as I only had an helmet and front light, did not have the rear light so I purchased the rear light and it was going to be my first ride with ECC on 26th Jan and here my whole life changed seeing so many cyclists and so many amazing cycles together at one place everyone greeting each other laughing enjoying. I also met an old college friend from my diploma days Akash Ramesh who was riding with ECC for a year now

Now it was time to start the ride Every year on 26th Jan ECC arranges a republic day ride where Kazi gives a brief about the safety parameters which every cyclists needs to adhere to. Right from wearing a helmet to following  all the traffic rules. It was a small 20kms ride I rode with my friend Akash and had a great time. I knew I have found something that I am going to enjoy very much, after that ride I started joining every ECC ride on weekends. And I knew that my journey to become a proactive cyclist has just begun…….

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