June 20, 2018
As a response to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s challenge to the IPS fraternity, especially officers above the age of 40 to the #FitnessChallenge, Tamil Nadu Railways Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) Dr Sylendra Babu took to cycling from Kannur in Kerala to Ooty on Sunday.
“Accepting the the fitness challenge of the Hon’ble PM, I cycled from Kannur, Kerala to Ooty on Sunday, 220 km from sea level to the 6,700-ft hilltop,” tweeted the 56-year-old IPS officer.
“We started from Kannur, then went to Sultan Battery, a few villages in between, and then Gudalur and finally Ooty,” said the ADGP adding that “some stretches of road were not that good. One road was even closed. We had to take another longer road then”.
“The true test of fitness was at Gudalore and Ooty”, he said. The slopes were harder to pedal. Going down is also extremely dangerous as without proper practice, its easy to lose control of the cycle.”
It is not the first time that the ADGP has made news for his amazing achievements.
“Training back at the police academy changed how I was. It changed the shape of my body,” he recalled, “I wasn’t that great in sports at first, but with due time I better.”
In fact, he got so better that he represented India for the 100 metres event in the Asian Masters Athletic Championships, Bangkok, in 2004. He also led a contingent of 26 marine commandos for a half marathon event which was held as part of the 2014 Auroville Marathon. “I’ve run the Coimbatore Marathon for the past five years. I’ve been running every three days a week for 30 years now,” he said.
On exercise and fitness, he says, “It gives you pleasure. If you’re physically fit, you become mentally alert as well. Exercise can also help in relieving stress.
“For me, exercise gives great relaxation, more so than a movie or a temple. It will guarantee you a good night’s sleep.”
After Virat Kohli nominated PM Modi for the #FitnessChallenge, the PM posted a video of his daily morning yoga routine on twitter. He then went on to nominate Karnataka’s CM Kumaraswamy, who accepted his challenge; Commonwealth Games 2018 gold medal winner for table tennis Manika Batra; and the entire fraternity of IPS officers, especially those above 40 to the #FitnessChallenge.