It has now been 2 years since I began the journey of writing about riding. I have enjoyed putting into words my journey; my struggles, my successes, and the lessons learned along the way.
Last month I hit the breaking point, my lower back was in agony, I avoided my bike or stuck to short, easy rides. My energy was sapped from the culmination of school beginning (for Hailey), work travel and general craziness of attempting to do too much. I spent 5 days in Boulder between 2 events, and was possibly the worst guest ever. I could barely open my eyes some mornings, I was sleeping hours later than usual, and even with the added rest, was still too tired to do much of anything. I was referred to a sports massage therapist to help with the cause I could identify, which was the lingering pain in my left low back that was worsening with each day.
After an amazing 90 minute massage, my massage therapist came back with a surprise diagnosis of my pain: an overly tight right hip flexor from too much time in the driver’s seat, coupled with a slightly weaker left glute. I walked away from the appointment alleviated from the pain, although still sore from the weeks of muscle tightness and misuse. What I also walked away with was the realization that there was more I needed to deal with than just the physical.
When I returned home from my travels, I took some time to rule evaluate where I was at physically, mentally and emotionally. And I realized I was drained on all fronts. I had been failing to let my mind and body truly rest. And both on and off the bike, I had allowed myself to fall into poor form. I pushed too hard with too little fuel, allowing anxiety and worry to carve away more and more from me with each sleepless night.
If you spin, or do Sufferfest videos, or are lucky enough to have a trainer, you probably are often reminded to reset your form. These last few weeks have been all about taking a moment to breathe, look up at my surroundings and adjust.
Physically, I began to take Pilates again, and work on strengthening my whole body. To help clear myself mentally, I cleaned my house from top to bottom, took on all the projects I had left sitting for another day, set up a schedule for myself. I stopped letting myself procrastinate. And then I sat down and evaluated my desires and set new goals for myself.
As you know if you have read my previous post “Fear of Failure“, I struggle to take on things that I may not succeed at, that I fear being perceived as weak or to acknowledge I gave my all and still came up short.
My goal this fall, as I cleared my house and my mind of clutter and reset myself for what lies ahead, is to give my all and embrace the art of trying, the grace that lies within not always succeeding.
This week, I hit the reset button, sat up tall and strong, shoulders back, and began to take on the climbs ahead, knowing I will make it to the top if I don’t allow myself to give up and turn back.