Merging tradition with a healthy lifestyle

KOTA KINABALU: One Sabahan did not just wear his heart on his sleeve but took to pedalling the picturesque 60km from Tamparuli to Kundasang clad in ethnic attire to spread the Kaamatan festive mood and promote a healthy lifestyle.

Wearing a shirt adorned with traditional Sabah motifs, Steve Mositun (pic), who is the Kadazandusun Cultural Association youth council chairman, said it was all impromptu.

“I just started doing consistent short rides for a year, and hardly had time for long, undulating rides.

“But last Sunday, I suddenly had the urge to go for a longer ride, so I called up two friends to ask if they would like to cycle to Kundasang,” said the 40-year-old.

Mositun said his cycling companions, Ariffin Maribin, 44, and Rayim Sidik, 69, then opted for a lengthier journey, starting from Inanam to Tamparuli, to meet up with him before the three of them rode on to Kundasang.

His buddies covered a total of 85km.

“Even as the youngest among us, I could not keep up with their level of fitness!” he said.

After gathering in Tamparuli, the trio embarked on their journey at 7.30am. Nearly eight hours and “three pitstops to puke for being unfit” later, Mositun said they reached Kinabalu Park at the foothills of Mount Kinabalu in Kundasang at 3.30pm.

“The heat posed the biggest challenge, and I had to maintain mental strength, especially during the long hike towards Togol and Pekan Nabalu.

“We were lucky that motorists gave way to us, but it was still nerve-wracking and somewhat dangerous when long trailers and buses passed by,” he recounted.

Mositun added that apart from parading his ethnic wear, he also aimed to promote a healthy lifestyle.

“Maintaining a balance between work, family and health is crucial.

“In the spirit of Kaamatan, I wore my traditional shirt with the hope of fostering unity and peace among Sabahans and Malaysians as a whole,” he said.

Offering advice to aspiring sporting enthusiasts, Mositun said it is important to have mental readiness, a supportive team to foster positivity, but above all: “Keep laughing throughout the journey.”

The Kaamatan festival, one of Sabah’s biggest cultural events, is observed largely by the Kadazandusun, Murut and Rungus communities in May, with Ranau hosting its official launch yesterday.

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Sabah , Kaamatan , Cyclist , Steve Mositun , Tamparuli , Kundasang


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