Saturday, August 5, 2017

I will not give up

Vinod Rawat is a feisty biker and launched his own biking club for PwDs and was on MTV Roadies. This post is a part of our collaborative series with ABBF and its INSync Initiative. 
Here's his story.

Can you tell us a little about yourself? What are your likes, dislikes, hobbies, passions and hopes and dreams?
I am Vinod Rawat, a below-knee amputee who has a thirst for adventure sports and the outdoors. I love biking and have my own motorbiking club. I also enjoy art and music, playing the guitar, acting, traveling. Meeting new people makes me feel great and I have a strong dislike for hypocrisy and smoking. In my free time, I cycle, mountaineering, and racing. I counsel the needy and dream of buying my own house and traveling the world.

Tell us about your journey into cycling. Can you tell us a little about your training? What was your journey like? 
I was 27 years old when I first received my prosthetic leg. The very next day I learnt to pedal. That year, I did my first long distance ride from Mumbai to Lonavla. Ever since then I have not turned back. I trained on borrowed cycles and asked for favours. It was tough, but I was determined. This year, I shall pedal from Manali to Khardung La with the team from Adventures Beyond Barriers Foundation.

You're all set to do something amazing with the ride from Manali to KhardungLaa! How do you feel about it? What is your special training regimen like? 
I am beyond excited. It is my dream come true. I have already been on that route thrice on motorbiking expeditions but this is the first time I will be on a cycle. I am aware of the perils along that route and the challenges it poses. I know what may lie ahead of us and I am ready.

Can you tell us a little about your family? What do they think about the new amazing thing you're about to do?
I am a single parent to 11-year-old John. My second son, Jayden, who is seven, lives with his mother. They are both acquainted with my adventurous lifestyle, so I don’t think they were too surprised by my decision to go on the expedition. Maybe they are little nervous? If they are, they do not let it on.

What have your personal challenges been? How have / do you work to overcome them? What inspires you?
Life for a physically challenged person is not very easy. Challenges, hurdles, rejection – these become daily facets of life. We are under-estimated and our potential is not recognised. People look down upon us every step of the way. The reaction is either one of pity or hatred. I faced all this as well, but I overcame it all. Somewhere along my journey, I was introduced to the Word of God. The Bible and everything that it says inspire me to keep looking up and moving ahead. I will not give up.