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That perfect moment of zen

March 23, 2010

Every athlete has probaby experienced this at some point in their life. I’m talking about that perfect moment of zen and calm – where everything seems to flow together smoothly. These are the moments of pure grace; where your legs turn over smoothly, you spin perfect circles, or you glide effortlessly through the water.

These moments are, at least for me, all too rare when I’m training these days. My mind is usually racing with thoughts of what I need to do as soon as my ride is over, or what items are waiting for me back at the office. Grunting and gasping for breath doesn’t help the zen factor much either.

This morning however, I found this spot again.

It’s been missing for a while, and I’d almost forgotten what it felt like. I was sick some last week (danged flu bug or something), and the week before I’d been dealing with a twitchy hip-flexor. I also had the recent cat attack – which didn’t help much either.

Not today though.

Today’s ride started out like any other. 5:05 the cranks were turning, and Jack Bauer was busy saving the world. Sometime during the ride I slipped the ear-buds out, and just listened to the whirring of the wheel, concentrating on keeping a smooth sound flowing. Looking out over my back deck towards the Chugach mountains, it actually felt like I was going “somewhere”, instead of just spinning in my living room.

In that moment, right there, I found it. The peaceful spin that I’m always searching for, and seems to slip away when grasped at. I sat there spinning for over twenty minutes, watching the city lights bathe the mountains (the light reflected off the clouds in some strange way) in a light glow, and feeling the cool (ok, it was cold) breeze blow off the deck.

Afterwards, I was reminded of this line from the movie “What women want” (yes, I’ve watched it – that’s the embarrasing part of my story here).

“You don’t stand in front of a mirror before a run and wonder what the road will think of your outfit. You don’t have to listen to its jokes and pretend they’re funny in order to run on it. It would not be easier to run if you dressed sexier. The road doesn’t notice if you’re not wearing lipstick, does not care how old you are. You do not feel uncomfortable because you make more money than the road. And you can call on the road, whenever you feel like it, whether it has been a day, or even a couple of hours since your last date. The only thing the road cares about is that you pay it a visit once in a while. Nike, no games, just sports.”

Yup. That was my moment of spinning zen. I just hope it’s still there when I come back to visit on Thursday.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. ChristyMcB permalink
    March 24, 2010 7:00 am

    Great post! I find those moments are all too rare as well.

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