As adventurous as this blog can make me appear, here’s the truth: it takes me a long time to pump myself up to try something new. When I post about museums and theater and street art, that is my comfort zone. When it comes to anything outdoors, anything that requires strength or agility or stamina… now you’ve got me panicking.
But I want to do all of the things! I want to climb mountains and raft over rapids! And so I surround myself with people who can nudge me off of the couch and out into the world.
Enter Laurie, my next-door neighbor and the kind of bright, plucky spirit who can say, “Tomorrow I’m taking my mountain bike out, come with me” — and not send me running for my protective cocoon.
Mountain biking requires a confidence and body awareness that I sorely lack, but I’m working on it. My time at Yeti Cave CrossFit is surely helping, and what I can’t overcome with muscle I can overcome by sheer force of will. I hate letting fear stop me from doing new things, and I try to push through when at all possible.
My 5-mile ride across Lory State Park with Laurie was a thrilling success. We started with skills and drills at the pump track, then took the East and West Valley trails, easy and predominately flat trails ideal for a beginner like me.
Laurie is the perfect blend of upbeat, patient, encouraging and determined. Next time she’s willing to plod along with me, I’ll be ready.*
*someone remind me I said this after I see how large my butt bruise is tomorrow