A freak accident, countless treatments, several prescriptions, hours in physical therapy, and then finally, surgery.
Tamara Siddiqui, a 61-year-old Florida cyclist, has had her share of health concerns over the years.
Photo Courtesy of Jeffrey Leeser
After going on a cruise with her family, Tamara suffered a freak accident. As she lifted her luggage, someone kicked it midair, causing her arms to swing back. She felt fine until the next day.
"I couldn’t move. Come to find out, I had the equivalent of a whiplash injury from that," she says. "It was a freak thing."
As she tried to manage the pain using different treatments like physical therapy and massages, her lower back started giving out too. This affected all aspects of her life, especially cycling.
“Once your spine is out of alignment, and especially years of it sitting out of alignment, something else is going to give...” she says. “My lumbar became a train wreck. Age and prior spine injury contributed to that, so cycling became very difficult for me.”
After exhausting her options for ten years, her doctor finally advised her to undergo cervical spine surgery. Although the surgery was a success, Tamara was diagnosed with adult-onset asthma a year later.
Siddiqui is an avid cyclist, who enjoys hitting the trails and participating in charity cycling events regularly with her husband, Sarwar.
The couple plays an active role in the Multiple Sclerosis Society and other cancer-related charities. Unfortunately, Tamara’s health halted her participation in these events because she could no longer keep up on her regular carbon bike.
“I could hardly get anywhere. I had to stop very often just to catch a breath or let my back relax,” she says.
This all changed when her husband discovered the world of electric bikes. After testing many local brands and conducting a web search, they came across FLX and fell in love.
“This bike looked so sleek and had nice lines, and I really visually liked it right away,” Siddiqui says.
After testing several electric bike brands close to home, they decided on FLX because of the bikes’ impressive battery life, control and lightweight feel.
“Other bikes I tested nearly took off when I positioned my foot to begin pedaling,” she says. “FLX was a very safe feeling — it allowed me lots of control.”
Now thanks to FLX, Tamara is able to bike through mountainous terrains and various cycling events.
“We’ve taken it to the mountains in Tennessee and Georgia, did the 2019 BRAGG 3-Day 180-mile ride, and are Ride Marshalls for the Multiple Sclerosis rides in Florida,” Siddiqui says. “Because of FLX I am able to participate in all these events.”
She can now ride without taking breaks.
“I can do the distance. We don’t even stop unless it’s for a normal break just to have a drink, some food, or check out the sights.”
Siddiqui loves the FLX team as well.
“Great customer service — always corresponded with us quickly and answered all my questions. The best. Seriously,” she says.
She still experiences pain in her back from time to time but she doesn't let that stop her from following her passion for riding.
"It's kind of like which evil do you want? I enjoy the breeze and the sun. You gotta live," she says.
You can catch Tamara living life to the fullest as she hits the roads of Daytona Beach on her G2 Roadster.
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