Yesterday, while I was (again) attempting to regain fitness on my bike, I started thinking about how I originally became a good rider. It’s like everything else in life; if you practice, practice practice, you get better, better better. Then today, Chris Guillebeau published a post on his blog The Art of Non-Conformity, and I realized that he hit the idea on the head.
The title of Chris’s post is: “(Never) Save It For Later.” The gist of the post is that we all have great products and mediocre products. Some blog posts are great, some not so. For a creative person, the tendency is to save the best work until we have a bigger audience or a better time. But what we really should be doing is delivering our best work right now.
Because creativity breeds creativity. The more we write (or practice) the better we become.
This came to me loudly and clearly yesterday as I struggled on a beautiful fall day to exhibit some of the same bike skills that I once had as a Masters’ racer. Then I remembered how and why I became such a good racer.
I trained with a team six days a week, and on the seventh, I rode around the neighborhood smelling the flowers. I was never the strongest nor the fastest rider. My racing strategy was good, but what was better was that I was tenacious and rode all the time because I loved the sport. When it came to race day, I rode my best–regardless of the weather.
During one regional road racing final, it started to rain, then sleet, then snow. I kept riding like there was no tomorrow. Many of my competitors, who were stronger than I, had never trained in inclement weather–so they quit. They decided to save their best for another day that favored their conditioning.
What those who quit the race found out was that there wasn’t a tomorrow–there was only today’s race that determined the final standing in the region. As a result, I became the Women’s Midwest champion and went on to compete in the USCF national championships.
Whether it’s showing your best work publicly, or riding the best race of the day, it’s use it or lose it.
May you have the courage to show your best side today!