Thursday, August 12, 2010

My experience of riding the CPR

The Colorado Peace Ride? It’s a 238-mile bicycle ride in the mountains to raise money for non-profit organizations.

I said, “Sure. I’ll do it.”

I hadn’t ridden a bike since I was twelve years old, but I was up for the challenge. I had no idea what I was getting into. After all, it’s just about riding a bike, right?

I trained consistently for six months, mostly on weekends when I wasn’t working. I began to feel burned-out at 4 months of training, and shared with my teacher what I was feeling. She asked me, “What are you thinking about when you’re riding? Are you praying? Maybe you should try doing that.”

I did, and it made a world of difference in my training. Instead of feeling exhausted after many hours of riding, focusing on something meaningful outside of myself gave me tons of energy. I felt a real sense of accomplishment after riding that had an impact that was beyond a physical or mental experience. For the first time in my months of training, riders around me would smile at me, or say hello. It seemed as if my prayer work also gave them energy and encouragement on long climbs uphill, even if it wasn’t them that I was praying for.

While on my training rides, I often pondered, “What is the Peace Ride? What does it mean to ‘Be the Peace, Be the Ride’?” When going inside to find the answer, I was surprised to find that when I felt that place of peace inside of myself, I felt so much inspiration, love, and joy. It seemed that the mountains, the trees, and all of nature around me responded back to me as if encouraging and cheering me on to connect more deeply with that place inside of myself. I began to get a sense of what this Peace Ride was about and was in awe knowing that if a few hundred people got together to ride while feeling this immense peace and love I was witnessing… REAL, positive change could actually affect this planet. Wow…

The Peace Ride finally came, and went. I feel like a different person, as if I’ve gone through some kind of massive transformation. I’m not talking about being proud of a big physical accomplishment, or getting a badge for completing a ride. I’m talking about feeling more peace, clarity, and heart-opening than I’ve felt in a long time, if ever this much. I’m not so sure what happened to me, when it happened over the four days of riding, or how it happened. I just know that all my sweat and hard work in the months before were well worth this ride that I will never forget.

Now, if we can only bring this level of consciousness and experience of peace to riders, organized rides, and communities around the world… How cool would that be??
Christine, Denver Cyclist

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