A little break from work

By James Durand

Many years ago I raced Moto-X. I remember many of my friends mentioning that since I had a motor, there was no work involved.

They were wrong. It was a tough sport that took huge amounts of strength and stamina. Throwing a bike around that weighs twice what you do for a 40-minute race is harder than it looks.

These days I often hear similar comments about lift access mountain biking. With no climbing and all downhill (DH), there is no cardio, therefore it’s easy, right? Not so much.

After such a crazy spring at the shop, we decided the Swicked crew needed a break.

We’ve been working way too many hours and we haven’t been riding much, so we headed to Whistler for a few days of lift access DH riding.

Shouldn’t a break from really hard work be something where no work is involved?

Well, this is a good break for the mind, and it’s definitely relaxing being away from the shop, but this is no spa trip.

We did 50 km’s of DH riding yesterday, admittedly with very little pedalling. But we pushed hard on every descent, rode the steepest trails we could find, and hit several hundred jumps at high speed.

I woke up this morning with aching shoulders, a stiff back, and hands that may be permanently stuck in the braking position. I could barely hold onto my smoothy glass this morning at breakfast.

I’m more beat up than if I’d worked another 16-hour day.

So yes, DH is loads of fun, and no my lungs weren’t burning, but we’re working just as hard here as we do at Swicked.

You may now be asking if this is the smartest way to relax and to be honest, I’m not 100 per cent sure.

I do know I’ll feel the aches and pains for a few days, and we’ll already be back to reality by the time you’re reading this, but these smiles will last for months.

Maybe it’s just in our nature to work hard no matter what we’re up to, and taking a break just means a different place to focus our energies for a few days.

When we get back to work, our minds will be clear, our attitudes will be adjusted, and we’ll be ready to pin it again, so maybe this is the perfect break for a bunch of bike junkies.

Just don’t ask me to open a jar for a few weeks.

I’m James Durand and I’m Goin’ Ridin’…