In the past four years, Andy Chew, 43, has cycled for various charitable causes, raising almost $40,000. This year, despite nursing a broken thumb, Andy pedalled on for the Wheels for GOOD SG50 Scenic Ride on Saturday, 15 August 2015.
It has always been a joy to use a sport I love to raise funds for the needy. Cycling for GOOD is my way of paying it forward.
—Andy Chew, veteran fundraising
Joining him were 500 other cyclists who rode in the Wheels for GOOD event on 15 August 2015 in Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park. Organised by Methodist Welfare Services (MWS), the two-race event celebrated two milestones – Singapore’s Golden Jubilee (SG50) and the 130th anniversary of the Methodist Church in Singapore (MCS130).
So Why ‘Wheels’?
The charity event was so named because funds raised went towards the Getting Out Of Debt (GOOD) Programme. Aiming to cancel chronic debt accumulated through daily living, the GOOD Programme works with identified needy families from over 10 social service agencies such as MWS Tampines, Daybreak, and Covenant Family Service Centres.
The ‘wheels’ concept echoes the 360 approach that MWS employs to enable beneficiaries to beat the poverty cycle. This approach includes meeting immediate needs through financial assistance, empowering people through counselling, debt management and financial education, as well as preparing them for the future by supporting their children’s educational and psychosocial needs.
A ‘Wheel’ Of A Time at Wheels for GOOD
The Wheels for GOOD saw about 300 cycling enthusiasts participating the 50 km SG50 Scenic Ride, which covered scenic spots around the island, including Upper Thomson and Punggol. In the 13 km MCS130 Fun Ride, 200 cyclists, mostly families and friends, enjoyed a leisurely ride along the Park Connector Network (PCN) from Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park
SG50 Scenic Ride and MCS 130 Fun Ride An estimated 300 cycling enthusiasts will take on the SG50 Scenic Ride (50km) that will cover scenic spots around Singapore such as Upper Thomson and Punggol. Another 200 cyclists will take on the MCS130 Fun Ride (13km), ideal for families and friends who want to share a leisurely ride along the Park Connector Network (PCN) starting from Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park.
The day rounded off with a “wheels themed” fun carnival for families, the young and old, as well as the GOOD beneficiaries. Carnival goers had a ‘wheel’ of a good time reliving nostalgic childhood memories with traditional games like rolling bicycle rims with a stick. The day was filled with joy and laughter as participants engaged in various fun activities including a Wheelchair Basketball Challenge, Inline Skating Obstacle Challenge, kids roller racing, Human Foosball Challenge, and many more!
Cycling and Running: Coming Full Circle
As runners, cycling also has tangible health benefits. Did you know that cycling can help increase your strength and endurance as a runner?
Some coaches say that road biking allows the athlete to do more work, but with less stress on the body. Mix up your weekly running routines with a 60 to 90 minute bike session that mimics your running workout. Say you take 90 seconds to run 400m on the track, and you want to run 10 rounds, you should do a 90 second fast burst on the bike 10 times, with easy bike rides in between each burst. Cycling on mostly flat roads are recommended to create moderate resistance and to focus on your heart rate vs. your level of muscle engagement.
Likewise, cycling is also said to improve running performance by improving the respiratory capacity in muscles in a short space of time, as running generally leads to a higher maximal oxygen consumption (VO2 max) than cycling.
On the other hand, you should be wary of easing either running or cycling into your existing cycling or running routine. This is because cycling and running essentially works different muscles and develops different respiratory patterns, as highlighted in this article.
We’d love to hear from you: Have you tried incorporating cycling into your running routine? How did that work out for you? Also, what do you think of MWS’ worthy wheels/ cyclist-themed fundraising event? Share with us in the comments below!