Gul Panag’s love for fitness and adventure is not unknown. The actor is always venturing out and seeking new adventures in the most interesting terrains. She was recently seen cycling from Mulshi Dam in Pune till Tamhini Ghat — a mountain passage situated on the crest of the Western Ghat mountain ranges. She posted some pictures on her social media account from her trip wherein she was seen wearing a helmet and posing with her bicycle. The ‘Manorama Six Feet Under’ actor was also heard talking about her “enjoyable riding experience in the hills”.
In the accompanying caption, Gul wrote a cycling trip “does not need to be extreme and physically challenging”, it can also be “fun, convenient and super comfortable”. “The beauty of cycling is that the pace is just right to take in the surroundings. One can enjoy the landscape and the terrain in all its glory.”
While some people may find it difficult to take their cycles out in the winter, given how cold and dry the weather is in many parts of the country, the actor said cycling is one of the exercises that you can do all through the year. “Given the pace being what it is, even in winter, one isn’t bothered by wind chill. And in hotter times, one has relief from the heat because of the relative movement of air.”
Some days ago, she posted pictures from another cycling expedition, this time in Ladakh. Gul wrote that she has been to Ladakh many times in the past, on the bike and in the car. But this time, she rode a cycle there, which was a “physical challenge”, because of the high altitude. “…given that 95 per cent of this ride was at a high altitude of 10,000 feet and above — going up to 17,500 feet. This time, I saw a new side of Lahaul Valley and Indus Valley as I had the time to ‘smell the roses and stare’. If only to catch my breath, because my lungs were at bursting point,” she said.
About her recent trip, the 44-year-old said when she rode her electric cycle in the hilly terrain of the Western Ghats around the Mulshi lake, it brought back memories of a cycling trip she did around Lake Como in Italy. “Beautiful roads with gentle gradients, stunning visuals and clean air — the same combination makes cycling here amazing. From Mulshi Dam to Tamhini Ghat, the 21 odd kilometres along the lake is one of the best rides I’ve done in a long time.”
According to the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, studies find that cycling reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and early deaths, and may prevent weight gain or obesity. When it comes to e-bikes, it can provide extra power when riding hills or if the cyclist is tired after covering a certain distance. It can allow for a longer ride in different types of terrain.