Biking Up the Hills of Life? Keep on Pedaling!

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  • Yesterday we went for a bicycle ride through the outskirts of downtown Boulder. It was one of those picture-perfect crisp autumn days filled with clear cool mountain air, bright sunshine and Nature at her finest. The paved bike path meanders through city and wooded park areas, back and forth over Boulder Creek and up and down small hills at the base of the Rocky Mountains.

    The last flaming colors of autumn had fallen and were covered with touches of snow still remaining from Friday morning’s passing storm. The first ice of winter was desperately clinging to the rocks as it tried to form a crust on the top of the flowing waters. I felt at one with the Universe, blissfully happy with the day, my life and grateful to live in such a beautiful place.

    As I was riding, I couldn’t help but think back to bike rides as a young girl, before we had things like multiple speeds and gears. I remember what a big deal it was to get my first 10-speed when I was 14 years old.  Remember how big hills used to seem when you had to stand up on your bike to keep moving? Now we just push a little button, move a chain over to another sprocket and continue pedaling.

    With Koda running by our side, we rode up and down undeterred by the hills in front or behind us.

    It wasn’t until we were in the car heading back home that I had a realization. You probably know by now that I think almost everything relates metaphorically to my life. In the car on our way home, we were at the base of a very large hill and my first thought was downshift quickly! Although my husband was driving our car, in my mind I was still on my bike. It struck me how I was dealing with and preparing for the situation as if I were on autopilot.

    Just like when a mountain appears on the road in our life, do we pull over with frustration, or just downshift and keep going? I strive to be like my 21-speed bike. I have speeds that I travel on flat, safe and predictable places in my life. I also have brakes for the downhill treks when life comes racing at me too fast. And most importantly, I have gears for the uphill times so that I can keep going.

    Instead of pulling over when a mountain looms in the distance, downshifting gears and slowing down a bit allows me to cross obstacles in my path. Sometimes I travel uphill more slowly than I’d like. But, if I just keep on pushing one pedal after the next, I am soon zooming down the other side, wind blowing through my hair, with a big grin on my face.

    Life will always have its ups and downs. We get to choose if we will pull over and get off the path, or just keep on riding. Even if we fall off we can get back on. We only lose when we stop pedaling.

    Gail Lynne Goodwin

    Gail Lynne Goodwin is the founder of InspireMeToday.com, bringing the best inspiration to the world. InspireMeToday.com provides free inspiration, each day from a new Inspirational Luminary, to a global community of folks from over 150 countries. Gail has interviewed many well-known names including Sir Richard Branson, Guy Laliberte, Seth Godin, Tony Hseih, Gary Vaynerchuk, Michael Gerber, Marci Shimoff, Jack Canfield and hundreds more. According to Mashable, Gail was one of 2009's Top 25 Most Inspirational People on Twitter. Prior to InspireMeToday.com, Gail spent several years as manager for her recording artist daughter, Carly. As a result of the success of their co-penned song, "Baby Come Back Home", Gail accompanied her daughter to bases in the US and to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba where Carly performed for our troops. Gail and Carly created the 'World's Longest Letter' of love and support and delivered the 18-mile long scroll on a month-long tour of Iraq and the Persian Gulf in 2006. Gail is excited to present her latest course, Love in 21 Days, a step-by-step guide to finding love online. Love in 21 Days is founded on a logical process that has been tested - and proven! - by not only Gail, but also by students around the world who too have found love. Gail is a published author and a regular writer for the Huffington Post. She offers mentoring and mastermind services to clients worldwide from her home in Whitefish, Montana. Follow Gail on Twitter or Google+.

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    1. Conor
      Conor says:

      Hi Gail,

      That was a real treat to read 🙂

      Another related metaphor. What about a bike helmet for the inevitable times that life knocks us off and we fall. It’s always good to have the security in knowing we will land as softly as possible when the winds of loss or tragedy or change hit us. Our family, friends and faith are our bike helmet. Love keeps it strapped on.

      Conor

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