BIKE DAY ON THE HILL!

May 10, 2012

 

The following message was delivered by MP Weston on May 9, 2012:

Good Afternoon Ladies and Gentlemen, Cycling experts and novices, drivers who care enough to share the road, and all those who care enough not to drive at all;

There’s a standard rule of physics that states, “A body in motion tends to stay in motion”.

That’s what today is all about; that’s what the Parliamentary Fitness Initiative is all about à getting people moving! Because we believe that, once active, healthy living becomes a habit, it becomes more than a way of life – it’s a way to live!

I don’t stand here today as a politician; I’m speaking from a life of experience. Whether I’m cycling to work, or running and swimming with other Parliamentarians through the week, or cycling in the GranFondo from Vancouver to Whistler, or going for a weekend ride with my kids, staying active and staying in motion is the key to maintaining my energy, my focus and my sense of well-being, so I can fulfill & really enjoy all of my roles: husband, father and MP.

Anyone who cycles regularly knows that biking is more than the physical act of pedaling; it’s more than a way of getting from A to B. When I’m on my bike, coming into work on the Hill or getting up into the hills of West Vancouver, it’s an experience that feeds my mind and spirit as well. Anyone who’s been on a bike knows the feeling of accomplishment and peace, clarity and connection.

Last year, I embarked on a journey we call “Ride the Riding” – I rode my bike through virtually every corner of the constituency, and I intend to do it again this summer & fall. It gave me an opportunity to meet some terrific, sports-minded people who biked along with me at parts of the route. And it gave me the chance to spend some unhurried time with the folks I’m proud and pleased to represent, because on a bike, I could stop virtually anywhere to talk, to share a coffee and to swap stories.

On a bike, a person is simply more aware of their surroundings and the natural environment. The choice to bike or walk, whenever possible, is clearly the healthier option for each of us and for the earth. No air pollution, no noise pollution, just the clean energy of the cyclist setting their own pace. “A body in motion tends to stay in motion” – once our society, as a body with common goals, starts moving in greater numbers toward wiser choices for ourselves and for our planet, then our way of life becomes a way to sustain life.

Bike Day is about still more. We’ve dedicated this time today to cycling because we love it, and because we know what a positive difference it can make in a person’s life. But what if it’s not a safe thing to do? We need to know that we can send our kids out for a bike ride and they’ll be secure on the road because the drivers know to watch for them, know to give them enough room, and know the signals they’re making so their movements are not unexpected. Today is for making these serious  concerns known as much as it’s for encouraging people to know the joys of cycling.

Bike Day is about movement – getting ourselves moving, getting perspectives to move to a greater understanding of the physical, mental, and environmental importance and sheer fun of cycling. I encourage all of us who love biking, or maybe just enjoy it now & then, to take a friend along, and invite them to know a new way to live!

……..

Thanks for the email. It was truly an amazing afternoon yesterday. Olivia’s teacher won’t believe her when she tells her she met Nancy Green on Parliament hill.

“Our house brand of Kunstadt Sports bicycles are maybe the most exciting thing we do. To have 20 of them displayed around the flame made us extremely proud. Thanks for the opportunity to be able to do that. We love the initiative that you have brought to us and the rest of the country. We will do what ever we can do make Bike Day On The Hill a bigger and better event every year. We appreciate the chance to be involved.”

Also a big thanks to Amber and Jane. They were a big help and really made our day.

Ron Kunstadt

 

“Thanks for the invite, it was a big success and caused a lot of positive conversation on the Hill! The day including the kid’s was so positive and reminded all of us that riding a bike is something we all learn soon after learning to walk so we should make sure that we stay on our bikes as long as we are on our feet!
If only 10% of the population in every city in Canada took their bikes to work or school, we could make a huge impact on the environment, our health and our communities!
Congrats, and thanks for making a difference in both of your home communities!”

Phil Marsh
Regional Manager, Eastern Ontario
Running Room Canada


Good morning, hope you’re still riding high!

“Bike Day on the Hill was a great first event with over 100 people coming out to highlight the importance of getting out and moving. Physical inactivity is a major public health issue in Canada, with only 9% of boys and 4% of girls meeting the Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines.”

Congratulations again!
Kirsty Duncan MP

 

On behalf of the Sport Matters Group, I would like to thank Member of Parliament John Weston and the members of the Parliamentary Fitness Initiative, including Peter Stoffer, M.P. and Kirsty Duncan, M.P. for the opportunity to participate in Bike Day on Parliament Hill. The event was a tremendous success and highlighted the importance of sport and physical activity to the health and well-being of Canadians.

Chris Jones
Sport Matters Group

 

“Cities across the globe are embracing bicycling as a mode of transportation and recreation – a daily way to stay fit, lessen congestion and as a means of increasing their liveability. Canadian cities are increasingly part of this trend. From St. John’s to Vancouver, to Yellowknife and in Essex County, the winds of change are blowing as Canadians embrace bicycling in growing numbers. While we have some work to do, working in partnership with governments, local stakeholders and the private sector, these are challenges that we must meet head-on. Bicycling is a solution for some of the most pernicious problems facing our society – congestion, heart disease and obesity, air quality and rising health care costs. This June Canada will welcome the world via the global cycling conference Vela City, in Vancouver. Working together, we can make Canada  a bicycle friendly nation and I applaud John Weston, his fellow Parliamentarians, and Senator Greene for doing their part not only for this generation but future generations as well,” noted Eleanor McMahon, CEO, Share the Road Cycling Coalition (Ontario).

Eleanor McMahon
CEO and Founder
Share the Road Cycling Coalition