December 08, 2005

A new challenge

Have you ever taken on a challenge you didn't think you could master? Something really big. Like signing up to run a marathon or taking a vacation by yourself, or climbing a mountain? Once upon a time in a mind that very miserable, I decided to take on a personal challenge. I decided I was going to ride a bike 350-miles in 4 days.

Now, the facts at the time I made this decision are as follows. I hadn't done anything remotely physical other than 12 ounce weight lifting in 3 years. I didn't own a bike. I didn't have a training partner. I didn't know anyone else that was going to do the ride.

Daunting. Yes. Impossible? No.

I signed up for the ride in January. (Still without a bike.) Bought a bike in Feb. and spent the next 4 months training for the ride. My first 20-mile ride nearly killed me. How would I do it 17.5 times? What have I done?

On day three of the event as I rode the last mile to camp, I was overcome with a sense of accomplishment. I knew I was going to finish the whole event. No longer a couch potato, I wasn't really an athlete either, but as I finished the ride, I knew I wasn't the same person I'd been when I started the ride. I became a new me. A kinder, more caring, more thoughtful person. I raised over $8,000 for AIDS charities in the process of my training. Something else I'd never done was fundraise. Turns out I'm really good at it.

So, my question to you. What is stopping you from trying that thing you've always wanted to do? Make the commitment, I promise you won't be sorry. Life is what other people do while you are planning yours. Isn't it time to live?


At 10:59 AM, Blogger Still Searching... said...

And such a feeling of accomplishment when you do something you thought you couldn't. Very well said Munkey.

At 12:15 PM, Blogger Annalis said...

Wow, MM that's amazing and congratulations on your accomplishment.
I have never pushed myself in a physical way except for the usual trips to the gym. Maybe this is something I should consider.

At 12:44 PM, Blogger celtgirl said...

I've been looking for that elusive "something". I'm going to look a little harder thanks to this post.

At 1:32 PM, Blogger Buffalo said...

I have made the commitment, my friend. The ground work is being laid and in April I leave on my Vision Quest.

At 1:42 PM, Blogger Mad Munkey said...

searching - sounds like you've done something similar in your life.

annalis - I learned a lot about myself on the journey. Like many others who expected to help others, I found i was the one being helped.

celtgirl - it's there. it really is.

buffalo - I wish you all the luck. Looking forward to a signed copy of your first book.

At 8:00 PM, Blogger ME said...

This post brings back the memory of my greatest accomplishment. My children. They are an adventure in life every day. And they inspire me to be a better person for them.

At 9:18 PM, Blogger Chrissie said...

;) Good for you Kiddo! Congrats :)

At 12:16 AM, Blogger laura said...

I have to say I am completely impressed. Really.

My goal is to move to Portland, Or. (about 2,000 miles) to go to art school.
What's stopping me? My apartment lease isn't up til next July.

At 10:53 AM, Blogger Lil Bit said...

OMG. I couldn't agree w/you more.
Live, live, liveeeeeeeee!! YES! =)


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