Thursday, December 17, 2009

What I've Learned

So its been four months since my Journey has ended and so much to say. I really miss journaling to be honest. Its so valuable in so many ways, both for right now and for looking back on it in the future. I wrote this list right after the trip but never really got around to posting it. The discipline and self awareness i gained from this journey has had an unbelievable impact on my life this past four months. I can only hope that it continues to do so. When times are tough, its always good to have that one positive memory you can always turn back to, no matter what. Thats what Bike and Build is for me. So here goes,

What I've learned from Bike and Build

I wanna say this will be a concise list of takeaway points, some more helpful than others, but that might be getting a bit too ambitious even for this blog. Some will invariably be left out. Lets just write and see what happens.

1. Always make an effort to Stretch - In every sense of the word. The same way its crucial for your muscles to develop properly, making a habit of pushing your boundaries is essential to building a healthy personality and consciousness.

2. There's always a downhill - No matter how steep that grade is, no matter how much distress you're going through, there will always be that crest of relief and rest at the top followed by magical coasting to remind you of why it was all worth it.

3. Pick and choose your battles - 32 people can't all weigh in on every decision. What's more, they don't really need to. Just chill out.

4. Everything needs maintenance - Especially Bikes. For these, a little lube goes a long way. For everything else, some effort now always can save a lot of hassle, or sunburn, or scarring, later.

5. Just Ask - What do you have to lose? So long as you don't bend karma, people can be surprisingly generous. After all, rules are only as strong as their enforcers.

6. Family doesn't always require blood ties - How many of your blood relatives have you showered naked and crotch buttered with?

7. Get over yourself - Nobody is scrutinizing your every action. A little silliness never hurt anyone.

8. Systems work - Whether its for packing your bag every single day for 2 months or organizing your desk, find something that works and stick to it. Happy life will follow.

9. Sometimes you're the pigeon and sometimes you're the statue - Sometimes your legs feel like 5 ton bricks and every stroke kills you. Other times you can sprint 30 like nothing. Be prepared for both. They just happen.

Bonus: You can do anything - You just biked 4,100 miles across this country. Through its windiest plains. Up its tallest mountains. Across its hottest deserts. You better damn well believe it.