A Dad and a Bike

IMG_1681One thing you have to understand first about my Dad is that he’s a serial hobbyist, and he’s got some serious focus when it comes to his hobbies.  Whatever the particular hobby du jour, he pours his energy, time, and money into it fully.  To him, there is no such thing as “dabbling” in something.  He goes all in.

 

Over the years, there have been deep excursions into golfing, electric cars, fly fishing, remote controlled planes and helicopters, and now the current obsession of cycling.  He will spend hours on the internet, watching YouTube videos, visiting specialty shops, devouring all the information he can get about a particular topic.  I’m not sure when the current obsession with cycling started, because he gets so into it and you forget that he hasn’t been doing this his whole life.

IMG_1838So it came as little surprise when he signed up for one of the hardest bike tours in the country, Ride the Rockies.  This year, the route took riders 471 miles in 6 days, over mountain passes at more than 11,000 feet in elevation.  The total cumulative elevation gain in the 6 days was over 28,000 feet!  This is not for the weak-at-heart.

 

He had been training like crazy, logging over 2700 miles since February.  We had the honor of seeing him in action a few days this week, driving along the route to cheer him on and spend some time with him after finishing the day.  There’s just something about seeing thousands of people out there challenging themselves, pushing for something that you know they’ve worked their butts off for.   The air was permeated with the sense that big things are possible.

IMG_1768The first day from Boulder to Winter Park was one for the history books.  He went through wind, rain, hail, lightning, and snow to make it to the top of Berthoud Pass before the course was shut down for safety reasons.   We finally spotted him on his final climb up to the top of the pass, and we held up our homemade signs that read “Go Kirk” and IMG_1834“You are a Rockstar” and rang our cowbell, cheering him on.  There wasn’t a bit of him that wasn’t wet, and his teeth were chattering in the 35 degree temperatures.  We were able to offer him a granola bar, a dry jacket and eventually a ride down the other side of the pass after they closed the course.

 

IMG_1869The rest of the ride had vastly better weather, but continued to be difficult, challenging him with long days and lots of climbing.  Seeing him ride through this week and hearing his stories from each particular day were nothing short of inspiring.  I know there were times he wanted to give up, times when he would barely make sense on the phone with me, and times he was moved to tears with pride.

IMG_1872In this life, passionate people stir us to pursue our own passions.  It doesn’t really matter what you’re passionate about…It could be golf, or fly-fishing, or cycling, but you have to find something to pour your heart into.  Thanks Dad, for inspiring all of us around you.  I’ll keep pushing, keep pedaling, think big circles, and keep moving forward. golden finish

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Awesome Ideas From Awesome People

You will never run out of amazing things to stumble upon on the internet, but most of the coolest things I find come from people sharing what’s inspired them.  Here are 3 of my favorite things from this week brought to you by 3 of my favorite little hipsters.

imageThis newsletter…
Musicgeeks

 

Derek’s newsletter is like having a hip friend that is totally into music, making you a mixed tape of new or obscure artists that you would never find on your own.  I’ve been signed up for his emails for about a month now and he delivers a little nugget of fresh music and quirky dance videos to your inbox most days.

I’m someone with broad tastes but no clue about music, and I’ve found some artists that I enjoy (Where else would I have come across a hip-hop group called the CunninLynguists and their catchy ode to drunk dialing).  Even if the song-of-the-day is not really your thing, his convincing commentaries make you want to like it.  If you listen to his suggestions, I promise you will automatically be 10 times more hip than you are right now.

 

image[1]This article…
Our Love/Hate Relationship With Work by Joshua Becker of Becoming Minimalist

 

All jobs are tough.  Some days are long and things just don’t go well.  When things aren’t going well, you either need a new job or a new perspective.  This was exactly what I needed to read this week and his thoughts about where to find our motivation to work shifted my perspective.  He gave me a new way to look at work by focusing on it as your way of contributing to this world.  Honestly, it made it just a wee bit easier to schlep myself out of bed in the mornings and get my butt to work.

 

image[2]This Quote…
The Universe added one more day in your life today; not necessarily because you need it, but because someone else might need you.
-Timber Hawkeye

Along those same lines, this piece of wisdom floated into my facebook feed a few days ago from an author I’ve found inspriration in, Timber Hawkeye, and I had to put it on a post-it and hang it up by my desk at work.  The phrase “Live each day like its your last” has never really rang true to me.  If today was really your last day here, you sure wouldn’t go to work or clean your house or put money in your 401(k).  But this sentiment, I can completely get down with.   He’s written a book, Buddhist Boot Camp, which I have yet to read, but is definitely on my to-do list.  I always find his bits of insight refreshing.

 

So, go out there and be awesome!