“Confront your fears, list them, get to know them, and only then will you be able to put them aside and move on.” Jerry Gillies
As you may know, Ryan and I have been out in Colorado for the past week. This is our annual kid-free trip to Breckenridge to spend time with some great friends and for Ryan to race the Leadville 100 MTB. It is also a time when I actually ride mountains. For someone who complains a hell of a lot about the “hills” in Minnesota while riding, this is always a great wake up call.
There are no freaking hills in Minnesota. None. Period.
AND there is oxygen in the air. Huge difference! Huge.
I haven’t rode a MTB since Chequamegon last September. A few days before our trip, Ryan built me this sweet machine!
I was super excited to try it out in CO….until I got here. Then there was an overwhelming fear that set in. What if I fall? I am not a great bike handler. I hate roots and rocks. I can’t breathe here. The list goes on and on.
The first day I wanted to cry within seconds of hitting the trail out our condo door. I was petrified. We made it about 6 miles and I quit.
The second day was spent in Leadville, CO. 10,200ft in elevation. We rode part of the Leadville 100 course from Pipeline to the single track. I made it. It was hard to breathe and I conquered some steap and rocky climbs (to me). Victory!
What an amazing and beautiful place!
Day 3: Peak 7 single track across upper tree line to Frisco and back. I was .1 miles in to the trail and almost quit. I had tears in my eyes. I told Ryan that “This fu@&ing sucks and I am scared.” It was rooted and rocky…all things I hate. He encouraged me and told me we could turn back. But I kept on saying to myself that I could do this. I kept thinking about all the people that just finished Leadville the day before. I wanted to be strong. I wanted to not be afraid.
I kept going…slowly at first. (Literally the first 2 miles took us 30 minutes!)
But then I looked fear in the eye and said, “Hell no!”
By the end, I was climbing rocky shit at high elevation. I was rolling over roots and decending stuff I never thought I could. It was awesome. I am so glad I didn’t quit!
Mountain biking lesson 103.
#1) You really are stronger than you think you are.
#2) You can overcome your fears.
#3) Mountain biking is freaking fun! (and scary as hell)
#4) My husband puts up with me…thank God!