Pune: By 100 KM Indoor Cycling, Cyclists Raise Funds for Covid19 affected Daily Wagers

Share this News:

Pune, April 26, 2020: Wheels for Meals an initiative by a Pune based training academy called PowerPeaks- The Athlete Lab, which involved many Cyclists/Athletes from all over the world; cycling a distance of 100 km inside their own homes, using indoor trainers. The proceeds from the event will be directed by an NGO called Masha, to provide meals to the daily wage workers and migrants in Pune, who cannot afford to feed themselves and their families during this extended lockdown.

PowerPeaks is a Pune based academy founded by accomplished Pro-athlete & Scientist Chaitanya Velhal who led this initiative by starting virtual indoor rides every Sunday. PowerPeaks is an endurance Training academy which focuses on thorough Scientific Training to help athletes achieve their athletic goals. Many of whom are breaking national and international records in Cycling, Triathlon and marathons.

Chaitanya and his students have been training indoors on their bikes by using special equipment that lets one ride their bike indoors. Chaitanya and his team have been riding virtually since the lockdown started and have been challenging themselves by doing more and more distance on the bike.

“We started by doing small 1-2 hour rides indoors, but as the lockdown got extended we have increased the distance to almost 300 km (12 hours) on the indoor trainer. It was during a chat with Kapil that we came up with the idea of this unique way for fundraising. I pitched the idea to the whole team and it got a great response from the whole team. Not only that we got requests from cyclists throughout the country to join and contribute” says Chaitanya.

Recognising this opportunity Chaitanya partnered with Social Activist Kapil Patwardhan to plan the fundraiser. And they got the NGO Mashal onboard which has been working tirelessly in this field for almost 40 years in Pune. Mashal volunteer Anoop Mahajan who was involved in coordinating the fundraiser says “Mashal has been working in the field for the last 35 years and we know the value of a community that works together. Since the lockdown, we have been working hard to ensure that people who have no means of earning also gave access to food. Recently, Power Peaks got in touch with an innovative idea to get the community further involved and to raise funds at this critical juncture. It’s nice to see people do something to ensure that their health is maintained while putting in the effort to help people around them.”

The target was to reach Rs 1 Lakh and they have already received substantial donations for the cause. The virtual ride was conducted on a popular teleconferencing application where all the participants could see and talk to each other as they rode inside their homes. Chaitanya who is an accomplished athlete and a coach made sure that all riders were motivated and engaged. The event had participants from all over the country and even other countries like the US, Australia and Dubai.

This was a great act of solidarity and compassion shown by the participants in this global pandemic towards those who are less fortunate. PowerPeaks and Mashal hope to continue raising funds through more such events in the future.