Back at it again to push myself, have the TIME of my life, and help raise funds for cancer research as I Ride Like the Winded!
As I enter my second year of participating in Paceline, I am discovering more and more reasons to do this every day. So many friends and loved ones have been affected by cancer, and this is my way to take part. I’m fortunate enough to have my health to be able to push myself to do something like this. I feel it is the least I can do to play my part in something that is so much bigger than just me.
Through my first year of Paceline, I learned how to be a cyclist. It was not easy, and at times I resented the challenge I selected. How could I be ready for 100 miles? During the first Paceline Ride, there was a stretch where I really wanted to call it quits. My mind was overcome with doubt that I did not think I would be able to shake. That negative voice in my head kept telling me to tap out, call sag, you’re tired and have pushed yourself enough. Everything I had been preparing for over the past few months was to complete this ride, and the thought of not being able to follow through with what I had promised was deteriorating me mentally. I approached the 70 mile rest stop and could hear the volunteers cheering. I realized as I rolled into the rest stop that I was going to finish. I realized that I had the luxury to quit, the option to take an easier path and not finish, and the temptation to do that was so profound that it woke me up. I could end the pain and exhaustion I was experiencing, but my pop pop, my nana, my friends and loved ones who have had to stare cancer in the face, they could not stop the pain, the fear, the exhaustion. They had no choice but to push on, so I knew I had to finish this bike ride. I finished the 100 miles to push through and suffer in such a comparatively small way to their experiences with cancer.
Through my first Paceline ride weekend experience, I learned to embrace the choice to suffer on a bike, and to embrace it with love. I keep riding, too. Riding a bike to me has become a symbol of freedom that I gravitate to, freedom to move, freedom from illness, freedom to take charge and make a difference. I’m grateful for that freedom and the hope it inspires through Paceline.
“O public road, I say back I am not afraid to leave you, yet I love you,
You express me better than I can express myself,
You shall be more to me than my poem.”
Huge thank you to everyone who came out, donated, and helped make biketoberfest a FUNdraising success. In total, my team raised $625 for cancer research at the @georgiacancercenter More pictures and video to come! Again, thank you all so much for your support and donations! https://p2p.onecause.com/paceline-ride-2020/team/ride-like-the-winded