In less than a week I will attempt a 100 mile charity bike ride with my bestie, Brooke. The event is called Pelotonia and it’s in Columbus, Ohio and 100% of the proceeds go to cancer research. (If you would like to donate, you can by clicking here.) In preparation for the event, I did two spinning classes this past Saturday at Fly Wheel. The first one was an hour and the second one was the standard 45 minutes. The instructor in the first class was getting us through a difficult hill and she told us to just breathe through it. It occurred to me that of all of the difficult things I’ve done in my life, that’s how I’ve gotten through them all. Of course I’m not talking about the really tough stuff in life-like sickness or the death of a loved one, I’m talking about my triathlon, natural child-birth, and my marathon. In each case, I practiced controlling my thoughts and my breathing. The physical body is an amazing thing. It will do things that seem humanly impossible. It’s our brains that generally stop us short. Often we feel defeated even before we start.
No matter if I’m running, swimming, or biking the beginning always sucks for me. The first mile or two of a run I can’t breathe and I feel like stopping. The first 5-10 miles on the bike I feel the same way. After those first few miles, I get my breathing regulated and I lose myself in my activity. Most of the time I actually start to enjoy myself.
I know the end of this ride is going to be brutal. I’ve only done about half the distance thus far and it’s been tough. The thing is that it’s supposed to be. When I feel like I can’t go any further, I will think of my mother’s battle against breast cancer. Watching her go through the emotional heartbreak of being diagnosed and then the physical wear of chemo, radiation, and a mastectomy was certainly worse than one day of physical pain. My Mom was one of the lucky ones. She’s a survivor. My Grandpa unfortunately lost his fight. He did; however, have a long and happy life and for that I am grateful. We all know someone who has been affected by cancer. Often, it’s a life cut way too short.
This Saturday I will do my best to complete 100 miles. I hope that I can dig deep when things get tough. I know I will be thinking of people I know who have battled cancer. I would like to think that the money donated will go towards finding a cure. God willing in Brooks’s life cancer will be a thing of the past.
Thanks for your support.