An avid cyclist in Qatar recently launched a 600km cycling challenge exclusive for women, attracting both professionals and amateurs who want to stay active during Ramadan. Jordanian expatriate Hadeel Reyad told Gulf Times that the event, which began on April 14 and will run until May 10, aims to encourage more women in the country to cycle and exercise during this period.
“Participants can cycle at their own pace and time, what's important is they complete the 600km requirement to qualify for the draw and a chance to win prizes,” she said.
Organised by Reyad, the challenge provides an opportunity for citizens and residents to regularly exercise in a safe environment but still adhering to the Covid-19 protocols set by the Qatar government. Since the number of participants is limited, Reyad noted that “the draw will be made only for those who followed the terms of the challenge and completed the required distance.” A mobile app is being used to measure the distance achieved by every participant.
Adiel Mohamed, a Qatar Chain Reaction member and owner of Veloracer Custom Cycle Wear who is one of the sponsors of the event, echoed Reyad’s statement saying that “this ladies-only cycling challenge” inspires and motivates more people to live an active and healthy lifestyle.
“Participants can do it anytime of the day and it’s open to all Qatar residents. First place winner will receive prizes to the value of QR3,250 and QR2,700 for the second place while the third placer gets QR1,500 and QR1,000 for the fourth placer,” he said.
Mohamed added that the challenge also allows participants to choose the paths or roads they want to take, either they do it in group or individually. “We hope to make it a regular event so more people in Qatar will be enticed to cycle and burn more calories despite the current situation,” he said.
A professional and avid cyclist, Mohamed highlighted the importance of cycling as a healthy, effective, safe, and exciting way to be physically fit. Olga, one of the participants lauded Reyad for organising “an amazing challenge,” saying “we’re also able to see how many ladies are really into cycling”. For Daniela, another participant, said: "Little rides every day, thank you for setting the challenge”, while Mamiya and Hattie thanked the organisers for running the challenge.
It is learnt that the number of cycling enthusiasts in Qatar has been increasing significantly since the start of the cold months last year, and many have been doing weekly races until summer, either early morning or in the evening.