That Day I Asked My Friend to Kick My A%#

It was no big deal, just mountain biking. Wait, who am I kidding. This was the most disciplined and fit man that I knew. He’d also been training seriously for the past few years. It just so happened, he was also one of my best friends. But, I knew I needed something…. I just didn’t expect that it would be an ass kicking in the form of a 20K mountain bike ride. Here’s why I knew I need something though – I was struggling. The relationship with my partner was painful, the effects were being felt by my kids and I didn’t know where else to turn. John (name changed) was a great friend, but more importantly I knew he was driven, focused, and successful in the areas that I wanted to be: his wife and family, his business, and his health/fitness. So I asked him to spend a day mountain biking with me. I remember it clearly. We got up early and hit the trails. I’d never really been mountain biking, so he started me easily – double track on one of his best bikes. We proceeded for about 20-30 minutes navigating trails that I enjoyed, even though I was working pretty hard. Around the 30 minute mark we pulled over to grab some water and he said, “the trails we just rode are usually how I start my warm-up.” Did he just say, start?! I was already breathing heavy and thinking we’d try two or three more trails before calling it a day. Oh, how wrong I was! For the next two and a half hours we rode up, down, and around trails that chewed me up and spit me out. Thankfully I never bailed, but there were many times I couldn’t get up an incline or my feet fell off the pedals because my quads were screaming. It was all I could do to just stand on the pedals let alone push them to generate any power. At every opportunity John would stop and ask, "Do you want to do another trail?" And my answer was of course, “Yes.” There was no way I was quitting. I would ride till my legs fell off before I answered no to his question. And at every opportunity he would keep riding and continue the pace that I’m sure was slow for him. But the only thing he ever said was, “You’re doing great Drew, keep it up.” I didn’t realize it at the time, but the decision to call John and ask him to go mountain biking was the most critical thing I did to help me get unstuck.