Every Saturday and Sunday morning, my father would throw his bike in the trunk of his car and explore new areas to ride, being absent from home two to three hours per day. I was always confused by this. What satisfaction did his bike provide him? It's only a bike, right?
That all changed when I starting riding my bike. This summer, as I was rummaging through my garage, I noticed a bike that hadn't been touched since I moved to Colorado, which was nearly five years ago. I had been annoying my parents to help me purchase a bike for college.
Scared but curious, I decided to try riding it. I mean, wasn't it supposed to be easy? Alas, it was not. Think about it -- when was the last time you were on a bike, a real one, and not stationary? The adrenaline and the experience, is completely different.
At first, I spent five or 10 minutes riding around, doing small turns or practicing shifting gears. The greatest moment of it all? My father was there with me, every step of the way. He ran up and down the street making sure my screaming wasn't due to a negative outcome. I'll never forget those moments. Who says memories with your parents end before college? It was something we bonded over. And slowly, I was starting to understand why my father would wake up early on those Saturday and Sunday mornings.
Then, college came. The look on my father's face was priceless when he showed me how to lock my bike. Over various methods of communication, my father would ask: "Did you ride your bike today?" Unfortunately, for almost two months, my answer was no.
Why? I was hesitant. Failing miserably was not on my agenda. But then, with a kick of confidence, I got on my bike in late September. All I kept thinking was (ecstatically) that my father and mother would be proud of me! Even if it was doing something as petty as riding my bike, it was something I was doing for myself, and not for anyone else.
Now, all I want to do is ride my bike! There are absolutely no words to describe the rush you get while riding your bike. To challenge myself, I established goals. For instance, one day, I would ride to the brim of campus. The next, I would ride to classes, dodging people along the way. It feels incredible to know that you hit your goals.
The next time you are feeling angry, excited, motivated or any emotion in between, ride a bike. You are able to shed any outside thoughts bouncing around in your mind. It's just you and the bike, together, united. The best part? Once you fall, you pick yourself back up. It's as simple as that.