Mary Eggers

General

All in.

This week I began a mountain biking class, mountain biking 101, through Singletrack Academy.  I have always had a mountain bike, but truthfully I am a mountain bike poser. I thought it was time to learn how to actually ride trails…. real trails…. and add another skill to my expanding list of “things I learned after I turned 40″.

I don’t come to any sport off the couch. I have been a competitive athlete my entire life. It’s part of who I am. I have competed as a beginner and as a professional (2000-2001). I have competed all over the world. So this part of my life…. is new… the part where I am loving the thrill of learning new things. I love it more than standing on starting lines these days. I love it more than competition right now.

So I am going with it, I don’t fight it anymore. I don’t know if my competition days are over. I just know that right now this is where I am at and this is the path I am L.O.V.I.N.G.

We have a few mountain bike places nearby and this class is staged at Dryer Road in Victor. I haven’t ridden at this park in YEARS and it’s clear there is a strong community who builds and maintains these trails. I made a note to check out exactly who they are and how I might be able to get involved and contribute.

I just loved the whole VIBE of the place. Rather than checking out wheels and bikes, it was….. laid back… welcome…. what brings you to the dirt? It was a LOT like skiing.

One of my former athletes and friends Alexa was one of the assistants teaching, it was awesome to see her in this role. For years I coached her through Ironman and triathlon, and she’s been a die-hard dirt girl for the past few years. Her passion is so evident and she’s one of the big reasons I was there. I knew there was a world beyond swim-bike-run and I wanted to know more about it.

I had a few friends in the class… really just by chance… and the other ladies in the group are just plain awesome. Everyone has a different background and a reason for being there. To me that was the real beauty of this opportunity, to learn what drives others and what brings them to learn new things at this stage of our lives.

We learned bike positions, balance, how to ebb and flow with a rolly trail. My whole life on a bike I have spent trying to be as aero as possible and now my elbows and knees were out and I was leaning in all different directions!

And the pedals….. FLAT pedals. I have spent my whole life clipped in. But honestly…. the flat pedals that Alexa recommended didn’t take long to get used to. The pedals felt almost like velcro with the shoes, and after a little while it all felt the same.

The flow and the feel of the trail is what I loved most. And the laughing. We did a circuit for a bit and cheering on my fellow ladies and learning that if you look at a tree you will hit it….. that feeling…. was pure gold. I didn’t crash (yet), but the nice thing about mountain biking is that you aren’t traveling at 25 mph, and a root or a tree is a lot different than a car smashing into you at 60mph. Plus here you can wear shin and elbow guards (they are neat, click here for those), for some protection.

It’s been a really long semester, and a tough one. I finished grad school, our semester in education is winding down, and I have some neat adventures coming up. I didn’t realize the strain grad school had placed on me until it was over. I also didn’t realize everything Curt took on in order for me to earn this degree. He did it supportively and quietly, and my gratitude to him for that and for so much more is incredibly deep and incredibly strong. It’s time for both of us to relax a bit on several different levels.

This class is a graduation gift to me, and another way for me to learn something new, something different, and to make new connections. As I said my love of learning new things, of taking on new adventures, right now it’s much more fun than anything I have spent my life doing. There is a whole big world out there to keep exploring. And right now….. I am all in for exploring it.

 

General

The path

There is a difference between living at your edge and finding your edge.

There is a difference between looking and seeing. Between listening and hearing.

There is a difference between forcing and working.

When you are on the path to growth, resistance is inevitable.

It is in these moments that real growth occurs. It is in our greatest moments of pain, that we find the courage to change. Pain is one of the greatest catalysts. For many, it is THE catalyst.

The hard part about it is that there is no instruction manual. We have to figure it out. We have to get messy and risk being sloppy. We have to stand at the edge of that diving board and not think, we just have to jump. We have to risk losing it all in order to find it all.

We have to have blind faith in something we are not sure of and trust that it will all be okay on the other side. Even though we can’t be certain that it will be.

That….. all of the above…. is what I love, and what I crave. It’s terrifying yet exhilarating. As I said, an instruction manual doesn’t exist. People have made millions telling you that one does. It’s your heart plan, or your dream plan, or whatever self-labeled dream guru wants to charge you three mortgage payments so you can attend their conference and hear about. You don’t need them. You don’t need their fire pit or their free PDF chart (free with conference registration).

You have everything you need. You have everything you have ever needed. You have it right now.

Don’t give that kind of power to anyone else in this world. It’s yours. You have the power and the ability to steer this ship. If you give them that power then you give up your own. You buy into their way of thinking and you ignore your own true north.

Don’t fear feeling lost, you have to be lost to be found. And guess who finds you?

You do.

You are the only one who can.

So get clear. Clear out the bullshit story that you are broken, or you are not good enough, or that you are not smart enough, not thin enough, not whatever enough. This is 2017 and we don’t buy into that kind of story anymore. Clear it. Land the plane, turn the page, hell…  close the damn book and light it on fire.

You get one shot at this thing called life, do not waste it trying to live anyone else’s dream, anyone else’s message, anyone else’s plan. Get clear. Get quiet and follow your gut instinct. It’s not wrong. It never was. You were just somehow led to believe that it was.

I am calling bullshit on all of that.

You do have a dream. You do have a calling. No one else can tell you what it is or how to go after it. You have to work the process. You have to let the process work you, twist you, wring you out, and leave you in a heap on the floor. In those quiet moments of defeat, in those moments of rock bottom, in those moments of your greatest pain and “I don’t know where to go from here” I promise you the answer will not appear. It will hit you in the head, like a freaking brick. Be conscious enough to see it coming and be willing enough to listen.

You are your own guru. You are your own true north. You are the one who gets to captain this ship. Follow your gut and your heart with reckless abandon, heart and arms open, and see where it takes you. I can tell you from experience, it will take you forward. It will hurt before it heals. Don’t stop believing. Don’t give up on yourself. Believe in yourself more than anything in this world. Fall. Get up. Fall. Get up. Fall. Get up.

You will get there. We will get there. Know that I hold space for you, and I know you hold space for me. We don’t get there alone, even if it feels that way at times.

Hear instead of listen.

See instead of look.

Work instead of force.

See resistance as opportunity in disguise.

And above anything else…… believe in who you are. With relentless abadndon.