After all these years of being afraid to be on a bike and riding a bike, I have become addicted to spinning. I am taking as many spin classes as I can during the week and each time I leave there I feel totally fatigued but so inspired to go back again. I am training and getting ready to do a 50 mile bike ride for the Tour de Cure in June and although spinning is probably very different than riding a real bike outside on the open roads, we all have to start somewhere. In the coming weeks I will researching good bikes to buy and familiarizing myself with riding on the roads around me.
Living in Maine lends itself to many quiet roads but also incredibly big hills so when we are doing hill work in spin class I am really pushing myself hard. I know along my journey of bike riding I will be faced with some intimated hills that may make me want to turn back, but really where will I go? Life is all about trying new things, accomplishing those things, and failing at things too. Although we try and keep our failings to a minimum to pretend we will never fail or we never do fail is not realistic.
I was with my trainer during one of our sessions and we had just finished some mitt work, or striking in boxing terms. He looked at me and said sometimes you get knocked down but you have to get back up. My eyes got wide and looked at him in all sincerity and asked if he was going to knock me down. He smiled and said that he wasn’t going to knock me down, that I was going to knock myself down, but I would get back up. Basically I was learning to fall and protect myself, while doing a “Turkish getup” to build my core and pick myself up off the mat. Since that moment I have been knocked down by life, by words, by people’s actions but I continue to get back up. I want to get back up. I am at a place in my life where I feel strong, I feel capable, and feel like now is the time to try everything that I ever wanted to.
I am feeling healthy and write this post with having 236 days without a flare in front of me. Each day that comes and goes that I don’t flare gives me another day of strength. My mother asked me what I thought the reason was that has kept me flare-up free for so long and although I don’t really know I do believe that each passing day brings strength to keep me on the right track. When I have a flare it takes me days, or weeks to fully recover which means those are days that I’m not feeling strong or capable and that lends me to lower more vulnerable times in my life. If I can stay flare-up free I can continue to try new things and yes get knocked down but continue to get back up and trying something new.
It has been a while since I have written a post, so I do have some catching up to do and will try to be better about more regular posts. Life is something that just gets in the way sometimes and that seems to be happening to me right now. However, with that said I am 223 days without a flare as of today and I couldn’t be happier about. I don’t know exactly what is helping and what the real cause of my many flare-up free days are based on but I do know that I am feeling strong, energized, and capable of much more now than ever before. I’m taking advantage of this new found energy and trying some new things.
I participated in a 2 hour 84 Asana class that went through the Bikram poses but also added some sequence flows and advanced postures. It was incredibly fun and showed me how far I have come with my yoga practice. I enjoy the sequence and flow very much but really enjoy the power of balance in the Bikram postures. I also enjoy the stretching and concentration of the Bikram practice but adding a few sequence flows really gave it a pumped up energy that was good for the joints and the soul.
I have also signed up to ride in the Tour de Cure this year and although I have never been a bike rider and really I’m not very good on a bike I feel like I want to do this ride to help find a cure for diabetes. Honestly I would never get off a bike if they could find a cure for MCTD, cancer, diabetes and other autoimmune diseases but if we can make a connection somewhere then science might lend it to curing all kinds of diseases. I recently just learned about prednisone induced diabetes and I found myself feeling very frustrated because I have been taking this medication for 10 years and I didn’t know anything about it. In all fairness 10 years ago if someone told me about it I might have heard it but clearly didn’t process it. However, over the last 10 years I have become an amateur medical student for myself and this has never popped up for me and I come across a lot of information in a day, week, month and even year. I’m so surprised that I haven’t heard about this and now I wonder what it really means and how it is diagnosed. As you can imagine I have a new focus and now that I know this is possible I want all the information I can get on this subject.
I have been fortunate enough to not have diabetes enter my life but how much prednisone does it take to induce diabetes? I don’t know but I will find out. I am riding for a specific cause but I’m also riding for people, people I love, people that have diseases, people that have watched me struggle at times in my life but now get to see ride a bike for 50 miles. I won’t promise to be graceful but I do promise to finish. Part of the winter training is spinning inside and how I love spinning. Over the years I have been afraid to spin and ride a bike but today I’m much stronger than I have been in the past and ready to climb out of my comfort zone and find fun in life outside the gym.
I am still doing my Insanity Class 3 days a week and meeting with my trainer for weight training so the gym life is not over for me but being able to try new things is really liberating. I recognize my active life is not for everyone and my husband and I need something to do together so we have recently started taking golf lessons. This is a way for us to be together, I get to stay active, he gets to incorporate some activity and we get to support each other in a new area for both of us. Its times like this I’m as thankful for this new found energy as I don’t think I could keep up with myself otherwise.