The Ride of My Life

Most of the time I blog in general terms about real estate, but today I’m going to share a personal story. 

Ride the Rockies (RTR) is coming to Grand Junction and as I rode my last training ride today before the tour, I couldn’t help but reminisce about my first RTR tour and the goal I had set for myself for that ride four years ago.  If you know nothing else about me, you should know that I am an avid goal setter and believer in the power that goals have.   I am the Broker/Owner of RE/MAX 4000.

I was 50 when I rode my first RTR.  I was riding with my daughter and a group of young women in their 20’s and early 30’s.  Why does that matter?…..well,  I felt like I must be crazy trying to ride with a group of young women and I wasn’t really sure what it would intale to ride for  7 days straight.   I had certainly given myself a challenge.  RTR daily rides generally average around 60 miles  for each day while cycling through the beautiful Rocky Mountains of Colorado with around 2000 other cyclists. 

The experience was one of the most rewarding of my life due to the bonding experience shared with those young women.    The ride was extremely challenging for me, but my goal was to finish and not only be an example to those young women of what an “older woman” could do, I had told my RE/MAX 4000 agents that I was going to ride this ride and I would finish no matter what. ( of course I was obviously in my own head)

On the 6th day of the ride, we were leaving Alamosa and cycling to Salida, one of those 60 mile days.  The road was flat and we were riding like rock stars going an average of 25 miles an hour.  The six of us rode in a pace line on the flats which means our tires were about 3 to 6 inches from our front tire to the rear tire of the rider in front of us, when another group of riders in their own pace line came around us, cut in front of us and we couldn’t get slowed down fast enough.  I hit the rear tire of my team-mate in front of me and from there it was a chain reaction with 5 of us down onto the pavement.  There were bikes and legs flying everywhere.  Two of the girls rode over me and two of the girls  flew in different directions.  We were all wearing pink jerseys and it looked like pink pepto-bismal was poured all over the highway.   At first I couldn’t move and as I lay on my back on the pavement, I could hear in the distance ambulance sirens coming…. I knew I had to get up.  Of course I had to get up and finish the ride.  Obviously all 6 of us were in shock.  I got up and said that I was ok, so we all got back on our bikes  with our road rashes and tear-stained faces and rode another 50 miles.  Yes, that does sound crazy and yes it was crazy.  As the shock began to wear off the pain in my back began to intensify.  At the end of the day’s ride I didn’t know if I could walk let alone ride the last day of the tour. I just knew I wanted to finish what I had started.  We were all moaning and groaning with the pain as we played the wreck over and over again in our minds and with each other.   No one talked about the last days 60 mile ride that lingered in the air like a looming bad dream.   I laid in bed that night doing a great deal of self talk, I wanted to finish the ride so I could fulfill my goal.  What I thought was driving me  most was the example I felt I needed to uphold.  I did say, “No Matter What”.  The pain intensified  to the point of  just being touched was unbearable. 

I woke up the next morning after a limited amount of sleep and didn’t say a word.  I just put my bike shorts on, finished getting dressed, got my bike and started the last days ride with the girls.  It’s amazing what a person can endure when you set your mind on it.  After all, our mind is our biggest obstacle.  I was on a mission and I finished that ride.  I collapsed into a puddle of tears at the end, but I felt like I had conquered the world.  It really had nothing to do with the ride after all.  There was a factor to finishing that I wanted to prove to my agents that goals matter, but it had everything to do with me proving to myself that I could meet the challenge I had given myself.   GOALS ARE POWERFUL!!!  Give yourself the opportunity to be the best you can be.  Give yourself a goal to fulfill.  Prove to yourself that you can meet the challenges of life. 

The injury I sustained was two ruptured discs in my lower back, I had back surgery 3 months after the completion of the tour and would soon find out I hadn’t tackled my biggest challenge to date in my life.   I’ll save that story for a later time.  I will say however that I am incredibly happy to be alive and each day I feel happy to be on the ride of my life.

My best to you. 

For information about RE/MAX 4000, please call 970-241-4000 or go to www.gjproperties.com.

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2 Replies to “The Ride of My Life”

  1. So true, it makes you a stronger person and it truly makes you appreciate what you have. I believe when you endure something like that it pushes you each day. You can compare what you have ahead and know you can do it, after all, you have done something much much harder!

    Have fun on the ride 🙂

  2. You are amazing Toni. Thank you for all of your guidance and inspiration. And as always, enjoy the ride!

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