For as long as I can remember, I’ve struggled with my weight. I was always a heavier kid and throughout the decades, simply learned to put up with the feelings associated with carrying more than a few extra pounds.
I lived a relatively active lifestyle in my youth. I played tennis for 10 years, took Tae Kwon Do, and was a member of my high school swim team. I was also no stranger to occasionally hopping on the bike or slipping into my rollerblades. However, somewhere between my apparently poor eating habits, general lack of time, and love of video games, I was never able to become a healthy person.
By age 18, I managed to get a better hold of my health and dropped from a whopping 225 to 200 pounds, a range I would hover in for the next 14 years or so.
I have been working at Everysight for the past 2+ years and through the process of testing our products, became reacquainted with the bicycle. For almost a year and a half, I was a weekend warrior at best. I did not find myself improving, nor did I have any aspirations of becoming a better cyclist.
That all changed once I registered myself for a charity ride to help support at-risk youth here, in Israel, called Bishvil Hashanti – 110 miles/180km from Tel Aviv to Sde Boker in the desert. I decided to accept this challenge, knowing full-well that I was not a pro cyclist, had never been particularly fit, and was undertaking one of the greatest distance milestones a beginner cyclist can achieve, a century ride. One of the main issues I faced when attempting to find a consistent exercise regimen was just that, I would ultimately lose interest in the sport I was playing. That would all change once I finally found my way back to the saddle.
Two years ago when I first began working at Everysight, I registered for the 2nd half of the same charity event (90km). Exhausted and feeling completely depleted, I was only able to ride 63km before surrendering and boarding the bus. The next year, I had not yet fully connected to riding and was still reeling from the previous year’s defeat. However, last May, something inspired me to get back on the bike. I turned my RAPTOR on and began commuting to and from work. It wasn’t much, only 30 minutes each way with a few rolling hills, but at least I was riding 2-3 days a week.
As my fitness improved, the commute became a bit dull even after changing the route, and I craved more miles. It certainly didn’t hurt working in an office full of cycling enthusiasts. On the last day of the workweek, a group of us would head out for a spirited 60km ride. All I had to do was turn on my ‘Live Tracking’ mode on RAPTOR and I could easily meet up with my colleagues for our weekly jaunt.
RAPTOR was truly integral in ensuring my success. When I first began hitting the steep hills, I was able to keep a close eye on my heart rate, and not overexert myself when I saw my pulse hit the red. RAPTOR helped me control the effort and realize my potential. As I continued to grow as a cyclist, I began to also keep an eye on my cadence & power and strived to maintain the figures that were best suited for me. Having that data directly in my line of sight was crucial to achieving my goals.
As time passed, I started setting goals to beat my colleagues’ PR’s on Strava and for the most part, was finding myself in the top third of all riders in my area! After continuing to train using RAPTOR for a little over 5 months, race day finally arrived. With RAPTOR, I was able to keep an eye on my efforts throughout the entire 8-hour ordeal and ensure that I wasn’t pushing more than I could sustain. The time in the saddle felt like an eternity, and most of the elevation came at the end. It was all worth it when I finally crossed the finish line and completed more than a century. I felt so accomplished at the end that I could’ve turned around and biked the whole way home.
Completing this milestone has only left me yearning for more. Not only have I finally achieved my weight loss goals, but cycling has opened a new world of adventures that I never fully realized until now. I have been fortunate enough to ride on some of the most beautiful roads in the world through the Dolomites in Italy. I’ve ridden nearly half the distance of Israel from North to South, and I’m registered for GFNY Jerusalem in April.
I can’t wait to continue exploring some of the most historic roads in the world, and pushing my limits further on the bicycle while capturing it all on RAPTOR.
I came to Everysight to find a job, I ended up becoming the person I always aspired to be.