This post isn’t so much about riding (or sliding) or “living dangerously”. Its not so much about a quest to conquer a stupid 100 mile long bike race. Well, its not and it is all at the same time.
I apologize in advance. This post is a little deep for a Monday morning. But hey that’s the space I am in right now (and its my blog!).
I have a good friend who I met because I bike. She is a fun, sometimes loud, vivacious person. She is also a good soul who cares about people. Over the past couple of weeks there was some potentially bad news on the medical front. It was hard to sit and not be able to do much to help my friend other than try to support her as best as I could in her uncertainty. I spent some time thinking about “stuff”. (This part of the story ended well. We got word on Friday that everything was fine. Big yeah!)
We get reminders all the time about how precious and fleeting life is. Sometimes it comes in the form of a driver coming too close to us as we ride (or driving AT us when we ride). Sometimes it comes from possible medical problems. The reminders are not always bad though. Sometimes they come in the form of a long hard climb up a mountain followed by a ripping, totally in control, descent down that climb. Sometimes it comes on a luge run when you are totally focused and in the moment. Sometimes it comes in a quiet dinner or discussion with someone we love. But we get these reminders. The question is do we listen to them?
It’s easy to go out on my bike and ride hard to get myself ready for Leadville, or to ride in a race and be focused on how fast I am going. And that’s OK. That’s part of living each day and appreciating being alive. But its also important to take a moment to look at the fall colors. Or marvel at the giant wind turbines. Or see the moon above a mountain on a perfectly clear Colorado afternoon. Or to meet new people when we bike, even race. Its important to not loose sight that its the journey that is important. Its important to not loose sight that one of the things I am looking forward to at Leadville next summer is having my family and friends there to help me and share the experience. I am looking forward to having them give me water, or a coke, or a reminder to just keep going doing my best, whatever that ends up being. I am looking forward to having a smile, or a hand to hold me and my bike up, or a hug when I finish. They add a richness and perspective to the experience that makes the effort worthwhile.
A couple of years ago Coreen got me a RoadID for Christmas. I joke with here all the time that it was really a gift for her and not me. I mean if it ever needs to be used…..well probably not the best thing in the world for me. BUT the last line on my RoadID is a message from Coreen. “Enjoy the Ride!”. Remember its about the process. Its about seeing the world and enjoying a crisp fall day. Or its about kicking mud up from tires on a wet single track. Or its about finishing something really hard like Leadville. Its about experiencing life with the people who are important to you.