I am reminded of a time, way back, when I was into my mountain biking, big time. I rode everywhere. I rode to work, I rode at work, I rode home from work and then I rode for training and fun after work. At that stage I had a Giant ATX 770 [actually I still have the bike] and I wore out the drivetrain several times over the course of a few years. Life was simple and fun.
In those days it was only Sands and me. She worked in Jo’burg, still working trauma unit shifts every second weekend and so our only car was often unavailable as she needed to get to work. As a backup to the bicycle I had a little Kawasaki AR125, and so we lived our lives.
In those days I did as many weekend outrides and events as I possibly could. This specific weekend Sandy was at work and I was car-less. The problem was, there was a JMBC outride in the south that weekend and I was stuck at home in Vdbp. Or was I?
It’s amazing what is possible if you want it bad enough. I dismounted the wheels, strapped the frame and rims to my hiking backpack, climbed aboard the AR125, mountain bike and all, and headed north.
The stares, praise and incredulous comments had me feeling like some MTB ‘guru’. Unbelievable they said. Was it easy? No way. Was it worth it? Absolutely.
As life has become more affluent, fatter and comfortable, it’s easy to loose some of that drive. Would I do the same today? Likely not. Have I lost all of that make-a-plan at any cost attitude? Definitely not.
We are where we are, not just because we have been fortunate enough to earn a decent salary but also because there is, in large measure, still the willingness and ability to sacrifice and put in personal sweat equity.
Hard and difficult work never killed anyone. It’s what got them living the good life despite the odds !
Know what you want and put your back into it. Forget the money. Just do the work.