If you know “about” this blog then you know I love cycling. If you didn’t then go click the page above for “ABOUT THIS BLOG”. I haven’t been on a bike since Thanksgiving and if there was such a thing as cabin fever for bikes (or in this case, not being on one) I have it. I have a threshold of 45F before I put my butt in a saddle and start riding again. It’s been that cold for that long. I’m not happy about it and I know my bikes aren’t either. When I can’t ride, I swim (indoors of course unless I am somewhere warm enough to swim outdoors). However, I am happiest on a bike. Mountain bike, road bike, or cruiser. It doesn’t matter. I love being on two wheels.
I think if you devote enough time to a sport or activity you can start to draw analogies of it to life. I find this especially true with cycling. Specifically mountain biking (MTBing) because…well, read on. First, I choose MTBing because that is where my heart is. I didn’t start riding a MTB
when I learned to ride. My first official bike was your typical 10 speed up until the late 80s. I bought my first MTB in 1987. A Diamond Back Ascent. It was yellow, rigid (no suspension), and by today’s weight as heavy as a cast iron Chevy. Perhaps a slight exaggeration but it sure feels like it now. I rode this bike for years and I rode it HARD. We had some great times the Ascent and I…and friends. I rode it so hard that I broke the fork at one point. Forks are warranted for life so I had it replaced at no charge. I was quite proud for riding it so hard. It means I was pushing it and getting my money worth. I was happy and I’m sure my steed was happy. MTBs are meant to be riden hard. That’s what they are built for.
With MTBing, you pick a line, ride it, pick a line, ride it, repeat…often in the dirt and on a trail no wider than two feet (we call this single track and it’s what we live for). It requires a surprising degree of concentration to prevent a trip to the first-aid kit or the hospital. In fact, there is more multi-tasking with cycling than any known sport in existence. If there is, feel free to shout out. In MTBing there will most certainly be stretches of ascending and descending. Sometimes an easy climb and sometimes a steep climb. Times when you are coasting or flying downhill. As in life, there are these times as well. Ascents can be thought of as trials or goals. Some are more difficult than others but when that end is achieved you are rewarded with an awesome view or a downhill stretch of adrenaline charged fun. Sometimes the reward is just pain, but it’s a good pain. It’s the satisfaction that you made it. Be happy, your body will recover for the next time and then you’ll find it easier. Congratulations, you’ve grown, you’ve progressed. You are moving forward! I really cannot find a sport more analogous to life than cycling and this is why biking is life.