“This is my command — be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go…We will do whatever you command us, and we will go wherever you send us.” — Joshua 1:9,16
In many ways, moving to Colorado has been twenty years in the making. My family vacationed here when my kids were growing up and we all loved the adventure of the mountains. And as a Spartan racer and cyclist, the outdoors present a constant physical and mental challenge that I crave. I feel like I am home. So, when I went out to ride the Rist Canyon Road loop, I knew I was in for a long day. Others had warned me of the relentless climbs and challenging descents. Oh, and don’t forget the altitude. I was truly looking forward to it with a mix of go-for-it and dread. I reviewed the course map, got geared up, and jumped on the bike.
It was a perfect day. I handled Bingham Hill easily and took the turn onto Rist Canyon. At about 16 miles in, I began to grow weary of all the climbing, some at 14% grade and I wondered how far I was from the summit. I knew once I reached the top, most of the ride would be rolling hills and descending. But I had no idea how much further I had to go. My legs were heavy and I started to fatigue a bit. I played mental games counting my pedal strokes and even prayed the Lord’s Prayer a few times. But the climbing just kept coming. Finally, with a long road stretched out in front of me heading toward the sky, I decided to get off the bike and take a break. I would do this two more times before reaching the top, at one point even walking my bike upwards for about one hundred yards. I thought I had reached the breaking point. When I finally rode to the top, I was mad at myself for stopping because I think I could have made it if I knew how far I had to go. The rest of the ride was grueling as I ran out of water, food, and gas. I was beat. This challenge did two things for me:
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Jimmy Page