How Mountain Biking is Like Life

Mountain BikingThis evening, my husband, Rob, convinced me to join him for a mountain bike ride near our home. I have done the ride before, many times, but not for a few years.

I always get a little anxious before a mountain bike ride as, like many adult women, I am afraid of getting hurt.

I envision myself applying the brakes at the exact wrong moment and plunging head over the handlebars. Or, struggling up a steep hill and stopping, thus falling over, bike on top of me. Or, while bravely navigating the various rocks, limbs and small boulders that inhabit the trails, making one wrong move, and wiping out.

I prefer road-biking, where the ride is smooth, and the pace is fast.

But Rob, rightfully so, thinks road-biking is too dangerous, and indeed, it can be. We have seen our share of accidents between cars and bikes, and thus prudence prevails – we mountain bike. This evening’s ride was beautiful as it is late Spring, and the days are long. The sunlight was so pretty, filtering through the trees. As we progressed, I couldn’t help thinking about how much mountain biking is like life. I could have told Rob, no, I don’t want to go because I’m afraid. But then I wouldn’t have experienced the joy of being outdoors, being challenged, and feeling accomplished afterward. With mountain biking, just like life, there are always challenges right around the corner. Do you navigate them with grace and finesse, or do you do the best you can, knowing that by doing, you will be better the next time? Or, maybe you realize that mountain biking just isn’t your thing, but at least you tried, just like life.

We are living in a difficult, challenging time that will test us in many ways.
But we will come out stronger in the end, just like after a good, sweaty bike-ride.