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The difference between a good ride and a bad ride

After two days stuck inside due to sub-arctic conditions (-22º F anyone?) we were all looking forward to today when it was predicted to be significantly warmer.

Waking up this morning, it was warmer (44º F!). And raining.

Despite the conditions, we decided to push forward and take the kids and the fat bikes out to the trails for a short ride. As we prepared to go, I reminded everyone there was one thing that would determine whether we had a good ride or a bad one. . .

Their attitude.

Go ahead. Roll your eyes. I’m pretty sure my kids and husband did the same thing when I turned away. But let’s look at what we knew – While the weather could have cleared, it was going to be wet, and might get wetter. Unfamiliar with the trails, we had no idea if they would be rideable even in the best conditions. The riding was certainly going to be slushy, challenging and difficult.

And there was always the risk that even if everything was perfect, the kids could throw a wrench into the works through their built-in sibling happiness sensor (which, for those unfamiliar, ensures as one sibling is happy, the other is equally unhappy, ensuring balance in the system).

Riding behind the kids today, I was reminded that starting with a positive attitude is not nearly as easy as remaining positive when reality sets in. When you’ve been riding for 10 minutes and it already feels like an hour. When the feet start getting wet. When the slush sends you spinning into a snow bank. When your brother easily climbs a hill you are forced to walk. When your sister seems to get more encouragement from mom and dad.

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She’s down (but not for long)!

“Attitude” is also more than just staying positive. For one, attitude meant pushing through, and not getting discouraged. For the other, attitude meant recognizing the other’s challenges and providing much needed encouragement.

Today’s ride was wet. It was slushy. It was difficult. It was also hilarious, adventurous and rewarding.

All because we started with the right attitude.