Why I ride Best Buddies Miami
For an activity that involves just yourself and a bicycle, cycling is a lot more social than I anticipated. I purchased my first bike when I was in Highschool to save money on gas for my summer job. I had no idea it would transform my life and shape the future relationships I would have.
I always used to smirk a little at the people I had to avoid with my car on the side of the road with spandex, big sunglasses, and clip-in shoes, riding fancy bikes. When I bought my first bike I vowed never to fall into that trap. I did. It didn’t happen at once, but slowly I bought the clip-in shoes, the sunglasses, and eventually a fancier bike. I didn’t however start wearing tight-fitting cycling kits until I rode my first charity ride. Best Buddies Hyannis Port. By then I loved riding, I loved New England and the cause was pretty honorable. So I did it. A friend who was one of the sponsors invited me. So I put on the embarrassingly tight-fitting jersey, matching spandex bib and rode 100 miles. I don’t know how I looked, but I felt great.
It wasn’t the cycling kit that I found most memorable. It was the people I met along the journey. It has helped form a bond between myself and my best friend and business partner. For over ten years we still ride together weekly. I became a mentor to a young woman with Down Syndrome in California. Most importantly I discovered Mack Cycles. A family run business not just selling bicycles but supporting the cycling community in Miami. While I first met them in Hyannis Port at the Best Buddies ride, it’s been the Miami Best Buddies ride that has had the biggest impact on my life.
I get up at 5 am to ride with the Miami Best Buddies group. It would be an understatement to say it has affected my social life. Despite the early mornings, this is a group of selfless people who have brought such an important cause to places around the world. Riding in support of this charity, with the help of Mack Cycles, has created so many opportunities and unique experiences for so many people, myself included.
I no longer ride my bike to save money on gas. In fact, I no longer ride alone. We ride because we love the wind on our faces going downhills. We ride because we love the burn in our legs climbing the Rickenbacker Bridge. We ride for the people who can’t. We ride because we can. I have met brilliant people on this journey. Needless to say, for an activity that just involves yourself and a bicycle, it really is the opposite.