Wednesday, February 17, 2016

The Journey of A Thousand Miles That Began New Year's Day On A Bicycle

I've been working on something since New Year's Day. I've shared a bit with y'all about my personal struggle to regain control over anxiety through diet and exercise Not that I'm a fitness fan or anything like that.

However, when life takes a nose dive and your sense of security and well-being starts to disappear, the pain and ensuing panic can force some much needed change in lifestyle and daily routine. Even if you're 50 something and completely out of shape.  It can happen.

A big part of my lifestyle change is riding a bicycle . Last spring I could barely ride one mile. It was hot and scary and exhausting. But guess what? By focusing all that excess stress and nervous energy on the bike and literally "riding it out", the anxiety began to subside. It was replaced by a sense of well being and accomplishment.

I rode nearly every day and set a goal to join a local 10 mile bike ride event last summer.  After that the confidence increased and the anxiety waned.

I began riding the bike to work occasionally- 10 miles each way. I decided to enter that local bike ride again and increase the distance from 10 to 27 miles.  

Towards the end of the year I was losing some momentum and struggling to find some motivation. The daylight hours were too few to ride to work. It was nearly dark by the time I got home each evening. I thought about setting a new goal - a really big, year-long goal. A thousand mile goal.  Wow.

A thousand miles is a long long long ride. No, I'm not riding from Texas to Utah. No, I'm not taking time off work to do it. This has to fit my schedule and be realistic. I won't ride on Sundays either. I have 6 days a week to ride. I can do it right here on my own street. 

A thousand miles sounds easier when broken into segments. It is a bit less than 20 miles each week for the whole year. Yep, that is definitely doable. 

I rode 8 miles after work today, making the year-to-date total 196 miles.  I'm trying to BEAT 20 miles per week.  Thus far I've been riding 26 miles per week. The daily and year-to-date progress is recorded on the calendar.  

Sharing this very personal journey because I hope to inspire others.  No matter who you are or where you are on your journey right now, there is hope.  You can overcome obstacles.  If I can do this, anyone can.  804 miles to go. Ride on!