Bike After Racing
Why we keep riding after the racing is over
All the typical thoughts of an athlete ran through my head, except for the one that made me realize I was not prepared for such an event. This didn’t happen until reality set in, but if you knew me back then, “quitter” or “scaredy cat” would not have been terms to describe me. So I prepared, like the determined athlete I knew I was. I managed to locate a used Hybrid, (part road, part trail bike), slogged through multiple running workouts, and gulped gallons of ocean water in preparation for the event AND rode. I knew nothing about the technical aspects of the bike I borrowed. I just knew that it would get me to the finish line. In reality, it was the one discipline I was good at. While I did complete the event successfully, I was not aware of how the bike would eventually define me and even then, I thought I knew why I rode.
I believe it was my move to North Carolina that changed my entire perspective on why I ride. In the early stages of getting settled, I remember meeting people who loved to ride. I was drawn to this attitude and joined a new cycling community. This community takes mountain biking very serious. Do NOT plan on joining a ride unless you are willing to be part of the adventure. Every adventure includes both difficulty and unexpected joy. I’ve been on rides where even while using a map, we lost the trail, had to create a new route and our excitement about what we would discover spread through the group like wild fire.
As I bring you to the close of my current motivation to ride, the intention for this topic was to bring to light something many of us have faced: the idea that whatever we are doing in this life, are for reasons unknown.. I hope while reading this, you can recall a time when you thought you knew the whys, but life as it sometimes does, redirects your path. Regardless of what I thought I knew in my racing days, that path taught me many valuable things. Currently, my riding situation is one of pure joy. I have fallen in love with the adventure of riding and I can honestly say, I now know why I ride.