Turning Points, Gratitude and Giving Thanks

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Ab Avi 9Welcome to week 9 of the ab progress pictures. I survived Halloween week and managed to drop some body fat in the process. Not bad if I do say so myself albeit more than a tad surprising. Hopefully in the next week and a half I can drop just a bit more. Goal day is 11/18 so stay tuned.

Since this month is Thanksgiving, I have someone that I’ve been meaning to give thanks to for quite some time. I’m way overdue actually and what better time than this month to express gratitude. About three summers ago, something possessed me to go out and buy a bike.

Yes, a bike. Not sure why, but I wanted one even though I hadn’t been on one in about 30 years. As they say, it’s just like riding a bike. Except not only had it been 30 years, I had never ridden one in a real road… ever. I went to the local bike store and got a hybrid bike and then I signed up for the beginner ride.

I showed up for the Monday Night Bike Ride on my new bike, terrified out of my mind. We started off and everyone else on the ride zipped around me, cars whizzed by, and I sweated and pedaled like frozen molasses. I don’t think I could have pedaled slower and still stayed upright. One of the guys on the ride stayed back with me, encouraged me, and talked to me while we rode along.

Then it happened. A car drove by, I hit the curb, and ate dirt and pavement. My first ride and I crashed! If I’d been alone, I would have left that blasted bike laying by the side of the road and walked home. Nope, Bicycle Man checked me out, dusted me off and forced me back on that bike. We kept going, with him talking to me the entire time, until I finished half the ride.

The following weekend, he volunteered his own time to take me on a ride at a local park until I felt more comfortable. He gave me tips, showed me what to do and not do, and spent quite a bit of time pep talking me. He rode with me every Monday Night Bike Ride that season. He and his wife later spent an entire Saturday with me while I picked out a different cyclocross bike.

He didn’t have to do any of this but I’m very grateful that he did. That bike ride was one of the first things that touched off this fitness quest – a turning point in my life that led me to where I am today. It easily could have ended that evening with me crying on the side of the road, flinging my stupid bike into oncoming traffic.

He stayed with me and made a difference just because that’s the kind of person he is and he wanted to share his love for cycling with me. Both bikes are out in the garage and I still ride with The Kid every now and then. I even got The Kid a bike so she can ride with me.

From the bottom of my heart Bicycle Man, I am forever grateful for what you did that evening. If it weren’t for you, I never would have gotten back on the bike and I wouldn’t come as far as I have today. Sending you big hugs and wishing you the best!

Do you have someone that made a difference in your life? What was a turning point that led you to fitness?

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