I hope you had a great start into the New Year!
As I mention in one of the previous newsletters, I had a big problem of finding a new goal after The Vuelta Ride in 2018. All subsequent rides just didn’t seem exciting. I even wandered to other sports trying to find a new goal I would be just as excited about as the Vuelta – a tough calling!
And then, I came across the Grand Raid, a 125km mountain bike race in Switzerland with over 5000m of elevation gain. The more I think about, the more I read about it, the more I am getting excited and the more I want to prepare for it. But why exactly this race of so many other challenges I could do. There are a few reasons for it:
1. Support Network. It was actually not even my idea but a friend asked me if I would want to do it with him. Thus, immediately, I had someone to train with, to talk about with and to connect with. Building a network of people with the same goal is absolutely crucial for sharing the joy and the suffering for the goal.
2. Outside my comfort zone. It is definitely out of my comfort zone. The fact that I am not good in mountain biking and have so much to learn makes me wanting to do all the things so I can be successful. If the same distance and elevation gain was a road cycling challenge, I wouldn’t even be half as excited as I am with this mountain bike challenge. I need to learn the technical parts, understand how I can sustain the endurance of such a big race and can handle the bike efficiently for that long. I need to learn the bits and pieces of my mountain bike….how much tire pressure to run it or how to inflate the suspension. So many new and exciting things to learn.
3. Connection. It connects all the things I love about cycling. Mountain biking is not completely different from road cycling (such as curling for example) that I can keep enjoying all the things I love about road cycling….the nature, the discovery and adventure on the bike. Sometimes having a goal that is completely new can be overwhelming so having some sort of connection from past activities to the goal helps to commit and stay with it.
4. Fun path. The path to success is fun. I need to ride my mountain bike to improve and prepare for this challenge. I need to learn some basic skills. The way to success is a lot of fun and I am happy to prepare for it! I think this point is a absolutely crucial point and often overlooked. Not only the goal is important but the way to get there even more so. Not only knowing how to get there but actually enjoying it so that you don’t have to motivate yourself every single time.
There are many more reasons why I chose this challenge but I can certainly answer the two questions with a big “YES” that make a goal worth pursuing: Will I grow with this goal? Will it give me purpose?
The next newsletter is about how to find a goal when there is nothing that sounds inspiring.
“If you’re bored with life– you don’t get up every morning with a burning desire to do things – you don’t have enough goals.” –Lou Holtz
Until then, have a great day and all the best,