This weekend I had the responsibility of representing our Cyclelogical brand at the SLO ULTRA and MTB up in Avila Beach’s Wild Cherry Canyon. Today, as I look back at the experience I would say…it was my PRIVILEGE to represent Cyclelogical at the SLO ULTRA because of the people I met: athletes, who victoriously endured their races, supportive families and friends, who cheered loudly and enthusiastically embraced them (dirty and sweat-soaked) and the other event merchants, whose camaraderie made the time fly!
One of the special guests, who rode in the dirty & grueling 28 mile Mountain Bike Race, was Rebecca Rusch, the Queen of Pain, as she’s been called for years. For over 3 decades now this 7X World Champion, whether competing individually or as part of a team, has been a dynamic athlete inspiring a countless number of people. She is more than just an
“adventure athlete”…she is also an author and activist, who excels at giving others practical advice on how to improve their performance, as well as, motivating and inspiring everyone to “be good” as her father encouraged her and her sister to be in his letters to them, as a pilot in the Vietnam War, where he was KIA.
This year through Red Bull Media House, Rusch released a full length movie, Blood Road, (http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x5z4i2z) about her journey biking the entire length of the Ho Chi Minh trail (which spans 3 countries…Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam for a total of 1,200miles). The film details, like a living journal, the intimate reasons why she endured such a complex journey and how it has and is shaping her as a person now. All I can say is that the film is a powerful emotional and spiritual experience…even when speaking face to face with Rebecca about it that is evident.
After graduating from university, I lived and taught English in Southern China for a few years. One of the “perks” of being a TESL teacher was the ample time off and holidays/vacations I was able to take in order to explore China and all the other surrounding Asian nations. Backpacking and riding through countries like Vietnam and Laos, where the ravages of war decades later are STILL EVIDENT, struck me to the core and helped shape me in my early twenties…but not as much as the humble and extremely gracious people, whose smiles and generosity with what little they had, challenged my world view and helped galvanize aspects in my character that I desired to reflect!!!
Now, after just turning 41yrs old, my conversation with Rebecca and experiencing her movie “Blood Road” helped me “dust off” those lessons and memories from 20yrs ago and evaluate if I have TRULY LEARNED from them and even more importantly have “practically lived out” those lessons. If you don’t know much about Rebecca Rusch, I strongly encourage you to check out her website, make time to read her blogs and start following her on social media and seek our the movie “Blood Road” to watch…you’ll be better for it.
“Be Good”…such a simple phrase but like dynamite, it is packed with a “potential power” that can change a single life and create ripples into the lives of so many others. I plan on taking that advice to heart…I encourage you to do the same!!! -bs