Over the weekend, I joined a riding group in the Sierra Foothills on a “bike shop” ride. It was completely last minute and I went more for the comradery, exercise and scenery. I only knew one or two of the 50+ riders. As I hopped on my bike, bleary eyed at 7:30 in the morning, I was quickly humbled by the level of athleticism. It was everything I could do to keep up with the “middle/slower paced” group.
On a 4 hour bike ride, you really have time to think and ponder ideas. One that kept coming up for me was the varieties of shapes and sizes of each of the riders.
One might “assume” a fit rider would be tall, young, lean, and have muscular legs. I have to tell you, the age range was from late 20’s to late 60’s, and just about every height and weight passed me by at some point! (and I mean ripped by me!)
I kept thinking about what “athleticism” or an “athletic” body is. Society dubs what “should” be a perfect shape, yet these perfect shapes often have no strength or health. We are “shaped” as apples, pears, eggplants, green beans and about any other vegetable or fruit we can dream up! That doesn’t mean we aren’t “perfect” if we have something other than a magazine emphasized body. What we DO with our shape, how we emphasize what we are designed by nature to do is up to us; and if we hone in on what our specific body is good at…we can improve in ways we can’t yet imagine!
I find that I excel better at endurance sports and get crushed at most fast quick activities (that doesn’t mean I don’t have fun…I just don’t do as well!) I know several who have beautiful perfect “shapes” but are challenged on a 3 mile walk.
Who is to say what our “perfect” is except ourselves (and maybe our doctor). As long as we try to do what we can with our physical bodies, our best is a gift!
Go out there, look around, notice what you like to do and what you find your body likes. Explore new things; try your hand at activities you are inspired by. No one but YOU can know what you are capable of! Maybe I’ll see you ripping by me on a bike ride!