Are You Really Present?
I decided to buy a bike back in May of this year, for an additional way to get some exercise. I usually spend most of the spring, summer, and fall running. However, my knees and hips aren't what they used to be. So I decided that I would give my body a break, and just bike on the weekends.
I usually sleep in an extra hour or two, and then get up for the morning ride. I try to get out there while it's still quiet, and before most of the traffic takes place. I've come up with a route that consists of a scenic path along the river, into an older neighborhood, through a corporate area, and then loop back home. The entire route is about 6 miles and has some slight inclines to help burn my quads and wake me up.
What I really like about this route is the variety of things that I see in the different areas. During this time, I've decided to pay really close attention to all of the nature that I see. Birds, ducks, skunks, deer, squirrels, you name it. How often do you really become hyper focused on the things that are around you?
On the bike path, I cross over a small bridge that lies above a stream. Ever paid attention to how the water flows over and around the rocks in a stream? Ever just listened to the sounds of nature when it's really quiet? Ever taken time to just watch what the squirrels do in the neighborhoods? Ever sat on a bench and watched what happens when the water from a fountain hits the water in a pond?
We often become really busy in our day to day lives. For those of you with kids, I know what it's like to have that never ending hectic schedule. Create some free time, stop and REALLY pay attention to the small things that are happening around you. You'd be amazed at what you'll see and experience.