Like so many others, I was/am having a tough time staying motivated and active this winter. When you overlay the slippery slope of a cold, dark winter with holidays, work, and ol’fashioned excuses – it doesn’t take long before you’ve found yourself at the bottom of said hill, and need to work double-time to get back up to the top.
Respecting that we all have different tolerances for that rut, how deep down we’re willing to go, and how long – I hit the end of my rope in January. Feeling lethargic, irritated, uncomfortable in my clothes and skin, and some gentle-but-firm direction from my doctor, was my catalyst. Time to make some adjustments.
If you haven’t caught on yet, my most beloved way to “get after it” is riding my bicycle. Biking is the easiest way between two points normally, and commuting provides a simple way to maintain some baselevel physical activity.
So I’ve made a big show of packing my panniers, loading my lunch, and layering up for rides between 4 and -4 Farhenheit. I logged ~ 22 miles on bicycle last week, waking my hips up and getting to-the-bone tired. Naturally, my seat clamp broke over the weekend and set me back a few days. But, the cobwebs are being dusted off and I’m heading OUT of the rut, not into it.
This year I left myself blissfully void of resolutions, and set just one intention for myself: experience. The word has a handful of meanings, and I’m exploring them all: marinating as my best self, getting outside in Alaska, and showing up. Showing up for my friends and family (emotionally), and showing up for the causes and issues I care about.
In a volatile period of American history, where our nation feels more divided than ever and our leadership at state and national levels offers little-to-no reassurance of better days, I feel that the most important thing I can do is take steps to be a more active participant in the issues and causes I care about.
Where do I begin? For more benefits than a smiling Instagram, it’s important to show up and be present physically. I’m working on informing myself, and being able to think and talk through what’s important to me and why (especially with someone who might not agree).
I am wrestling with speaking out through social channels, like this blog or Facebook or Instagram. I loved this post from Create + Cultivate, calling out anyone with or aspiring to digital/social influence: An Open Letter to Influencers About Politics. I’m not sold my status updates do anything but add to the noise. On the flip, kudos to Alex Honnold, Oneika Raymond, Outside Magazine and others for using their voices and platforms to call attention to issues of diversity, xenophobia, climate change, and more.