Cycling Stories

Not-Riding

October 31, 2019

author:

Not-Riding


Sometimes, it’s the weather: blue skies beckon, but the freshly laid six-inch layer of snow disagrees.

Other times, it’s preparing for an ultra-important board meeting or sticking with your pledge to ace your finals.

Or staying up late with the baby. Nursing your way through the flu. Counting down the days until the doctor removes your cast. Tending to your aging parents.

No matter how wonderfully cycling kindles our spirit, the fact of the matter is that we spend much more time not riding than we do blissing-out on two wheels. Whether it’s school, kids, illness, injury, work—you name it, real life has a nasty habit of squashing our stoke.

During these times, ego makes it easy for us to indulge in impatience and restlessness, fantasizing about ‘better’ days on the saddle; winded, heart thumping, endorphins surging.

Like junk food, these saccharin thoughts are tasty; they distract us and speed up the passage of time. However, they also contain little in the way of lasting nourishment.

Instead, at our fingertips, not-riding gives us the opportunity to cultivate presence; sustenance. We recognize it as a gift—one that, when mindfully unwrapped, allows us to cherish our next two-wheeled outing better

Cycling will return.

Now, we shift perspective, choosing to focus on positivity, not negativity. Fullness, not emptiness. Lightness, not darkness.

So go ahead. Enjoy the snow crunching underfoot. It’ll melt before you know it.

Splash in every puddle you encounter. When recuperating from illness or injury, catch up on your sleep and relish time spent reading those five e-books sitting in your queue for months. Create a memory with your family. Study hard and ace your next pop quiz.

Then, like tending to a flame, we can mindfully cultivate our newfound positivity until it grows into a beacon of light—one that we can utilize to constructively change our corner of the world.

Keep rolling: Who’s Your Windbreaker?

Derek has more than two decades of experience as a cyclist, and is the founder of TreadBikely. He currently travels full-time with his family via RV, enjoying the country's best biking destinations. A secular Buddhist, Derek frequently explores the intersection of cycling, mindfulness, and compassion in his writing. #rolloutblissout
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