Peanut butter and jelly. Yin and yang. Hatfields and McCoys. Yoga and cycling.
Yoga and cycling. I started practicing yoga not quite 2 years ago, fell head over heels for it even faster than I did for the bicycle. I like everything about it. Balance, flexibility, breath control (well, I try anyway), and cheering on the other students as they work towards a perfection they will never achieve, but try anyway. We all try anyway. I stiffen up like a board after hours on my bike. Same basic position and repetitive motion mile after mile. When I lay down my yoga mat and try to get my wound tight hamstrings to loosen up, they complain and eventually relent. But they make me pay first. I haven’t quite cried during a yoga practice after a long bicycle ride, but I’ve groaned, and not quietly either. For me to be a decent cyclist, yoga is the counter activity I need to have. It is, I dare say, the one activity I never want to leave my life. And speaking of life…
Life and death. Death is what ultimately brought me to Ride The Rockies. I’m riding with Team Christopher this year; plucked out of a cycling class, hosed off, polished up, and now all about testing out those mountains. The rest of this post is going to be about Christopher, not me. And this post is going to stay upbeat because Chris sounded amazing and amazing isn’t a downer.
At 21, Chris died. His mom held steady and created Team Christopher and a foundation to raise money to find a cure for Pediatric Pulmonary Hypertension. I would have liked Chris, and Chris…
Chris would have loved Ride The Rockies. Loved it. The training and preparation; savoring the decision making, creating the processes, and anticipating the results. He would have embraced the kinship of the team; riding the two wheeled beast during the day and drinking beer at night. Rinse and repeat. He would have fit right in climbing some mountain pass with a snow storm slapping him sideways and a sloppy grin on his face. Cold and shivering but ending with the most satisfying “Look Mom, I did it.”
Chris loved life, it just wasn’t long enough. He loved to think and contemplate, philosophy was his jungle gym of choice. He wasn’t into flash bang flair or bubble gum sweetness, give the boy a pencil and time to engage his imagination and he would write you a story. Privat Eye Jones at your service ma’am. Chris and pity didn’t end up in the same sentence because he didn’t have time for that nonsense. Get to the point or move on, there were things to do and people to see because we all only have so much time at our disposal.
Don’t wait for perfection and don’t wait for tomorrow. Get on your bikes and ride!!