Influence

My purpose in life is to Help Others Win.

If I’m not influencing someone in some positive way I get bored, and this is what has happened to my riding.  I’ve grown a bit bored.  I’m still riding, but not nearly as inspired.  In fact, I received an e-mail this week from one of you noting that my posts have dropped off and wondering if I was doing ok!  I’m muddling through but it hasn’t been easy.

“Leadership is Influence.”

– John Maxwell

This last week was interesting though.  I got the opportunity…well, FOUR opportunities actually, to help some friends win.  Four times I rode with a buddy whom, for one reason or another, had stopped riding, or needed someone to ride with them to keep them going.

  • Scott and I last rode together two years ago.  He introduced me to what has become one of my favorite routes.  Unfortunately, Scott’s holding down two jobs and has a wife and four kids – busy guy!
  • Steve and I have talked about riding together, but Steve doesn’t have a road bike and the schedules never seem to match up.
  • I learned that Ron was a rider because my daughter takes horseback riding lessons from his daughter.  I was spotted passing their house one day (on the route learned from Scott). Then I saw his bike, dust-covered and cob-webbed, hanging in his garage.  Ron’s wife invited me to contact him and “encourage” him to get started again (of course I did!).
  • Screen Shot 2013-09-09 at 1.39.49 AMRiding with Dave was a complete act of providence.  He’s a client of our company and in the process of scheduling a testimonial video I mentioned riding and he invited me to bring my bike to the shoot.  What would you do?  Of COURSE I brought my bike and we had a great ride together (I then drove three hours home and rode with Ron)!

All of the guys had the same basic concerns… They weren’t ready for any great distance.  They would go to slow and “hold me up”.  They hadn’t ridden in so long, they would probably just frustrate me.

What a great joy to be able to ride with these guys!

In each case we took an easy pace and just enjoyed the time together.  Each trip was about 15 miles long, and completed in an hour (which was faster than most thought they would be riding).  We talked about what got us started on the bike and the value riding adds to life.  The added value for me was the opportunity to fulfill my purpose again.

“The people who influence you are the people who believe in you.”

– Henry Drummond

Dreaming Again

I have a song in my mind, sing it with me.  No really, SING!

“The wheels on the bike go round and round, round and round, round and round.  The wheels on the bike go round and round, all through the town.”

The strangest things go through my mind when I’m riding.  You too?  Am I alone in this? (Could I beg any more obviously for responses to this post?)  I find myself counting pedal strokes or breaths.  Sometimes I try to keep time and see if I can count the seconds.

I also imagine great things.  I imagine I am riding in the peloton with friends and family cheering me on.  I imagine I’m with a group of friends and we are just spinning along enjoying the ride.  I have said a few times that when I am riding I feel the “thin me” coming out.  I have a pretty vivid imagination!

Perhaps the greatest benefit has been that I am dreaming again!

Sometimes the pressure of life can just suck the dream right out of you.  Did you know that a rhinoceros can only see about 30 feet, but can reach speeds of up to 30 mile an hour?  Is it any wonder that a group of rhinoceroses is called a “crash?”  That’s how life feels sometimes.  It’s gets going so fast that I can only see a few feet ahead.  And THAT, my friends, is a dream killer!

Cycling is really so simple that I find time and space to dream again!

I dream about the future, of people and places, things to accomplish and places to go.  I dream about the past, remembering friends long unseen, reunions, great trials and victories.  I dream about what I can and should do.

Out of those dreams has emerged a bucket list!

On that bucket list is… you guessed it, a goal for my riding.  I’m going to ride a minimum of 20 miles in all 48 contiguous United States.  Needless to say, Indiana has been checked off the list.  I put in almost 800 miles last year.  All but about 100 of those miles were in Indiana.

Ohio was checked off in August when I rode in a Livestrong event for Jon Colbert, a man of great tenacity who is fighting cancer.  We rode from VanWert, OH to the oncology department at Lutheran Hospital in Fort Wayne, IN.  It was a great day and an easy ride as we took it slow and steady.  We picked up people along the way and by the time we hit the hospital we had quite a parade going.  It was a fantastic journey.  I’m hoping they do it again this year.  I’ll join them for sure.  Unfortunately, I hear Jon is struggling mightily in his battle.  Keep him in your prayers.

I realized a dream in October as I travelled to Oklahoma and met my father for the first time!

Jeremy and me after our ride in Oklahoma City, OK.

Jeremy and me after our ride in Oklahoma City, OK.

There is much to tell of this adventure, but the cycling story involves riding with my brother-in-law Jeremy Hall.  We had never met before either, but there was an instant bond between us.  We got out gear on, aired up the tires and set off for 20+ miles of awesome riding.  He’s gonna be a great rider…you can just tell.  Next time we ride together I’m pretty sure he’ll be dragging me along.  Frankly, I can’t wait!

I’m dreaming again people!

When will I be in your state to ride?  I don’t know.  I suppose that depends on when you might be available to join me.  Let me know, because the ride is more enjoyable with friends.

Wanna ride sometime?  E-mail me and let’s see what we can do!