Monday Morning Debrief 55

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On the road to recovery I’ve been riding a lot with Scott.

Scott is a newbie, a recent convert to mountain biking who’s proved to be a perfect partner for catching up on six weeks of enforced rest thanks to that injury that happened way back when.

Getting it
Getting it

Scott’s been riding my old ShitBike™, a bike built from all the parts that no one else wanted; a bike built to use as a butty shop bike, ride quality not important, just a tool for nipping to the shops.

It’s deeply unfashionable by today’s standards; it’s got v-brakes, narrow bars, a 100mm stem, 1×9 gearing made up of what was available in the parts bin; it’s a 29er with a 26in carbon fork, steep angles and tyres I wouldn’t trust to steer me in a straight line.

But the great thing is that Scott just rides it, he doesn’t know/care about its failings because it serves the purpose of getting out and riding. And that’s what matters to Scott; getting out and riding.

No need to check if he’s got the right tyres, if it’s the ‘one bike for everything’, or any other part of the stuff that seemingly makes up a large percentage of our online conversations around bikes and mountain biking.

He just saddles up and rides, no matter what the weather. He laughs at the inevitable newbie crashes without blaming it on the wrong tyre choice or other component failure. And we ride whatever; we’ve ridden when all my ride buddies have cried off because of the weather or trail conditions. I’ve come back from Valley rides with mates just to squeeze in one more ride with him.

Scott’s still at that point where the all consuming fire of mountain bike love isn’t extinguished by a bit of torrential rainfall, hail or high wind. He wants to ride because it’s all new to him and he just can’t get enough. He’s got a hunger to ride and to learn how to ride. Each week stretches him a little bit more as we introduce new challenges to the loop we’ve been riding, but he soaks it all up, embraces it and advances a little bit more.

He’s gone from a guy who rides for fitness to someone who gets it, who shares the love of off road riding, who can’t wait to be out riding again. (We’re probably going to get him a better bike at some point).

Getting there
Getting there

So this week’s message is a simple one.

Find a  newbie and take them out.  They’ll benefit from your input and experience, you’ll benefit from their enthusiasm. Seems like a good deal to me.

Comments (4)

    I recently started doing just this! A friend I play football with every week decided she wanted a bash at mountain biking so we’ve been going around Llandegla, its great watching the week on week progress and has made me think about my own technique more as I’m trying to set a good example (not that I’m particularly good)

    I was once quite fit but injury and family concerns have kept me off my bike for several years. Last year I was diagnosed with Prostate cancer, no symptoms, just picked up on a blood test ( take the warning guys) So I have bought a new full sus. mountain bike and am gradually, oh so gradually, clawing back towards some of the fitness I once had. But the real deal is that I am so enjoying going out and riding again, so while putting up with cancer treatment of various kinds I at least will be able to get out and ride when I feel ok, which is most of the time currently, luckily! Once the treatment is over I will hope that there is some Summer left at the end and I can keep riding my way back to health while enjoying every minute of it!

    Just make sure that newbie’s not your SO – instant recipe for disaster…! Learnt the hard way… 😀

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