The only retiring Swicked Cycles owner James Durand expects he'll do is retiring customers' bikes. Photo submitted

Are you competitive?

By James Durand

For some of us, me included, it is an obvious yes.

Not only do I hate losing, but it seems I seek out competition. I’ve always been involved in competitive sports so I had my share, but in other parts of my life I gravitate toward things to compete.

I did it in jobs, I do it during activities, or casual outings with my buddies, and running a business is definitely competitive (Ask my sister about board games growing up and she’ll confirm).

So, for me, and many of my friends, there is no doubt as to whether or not we are competitive.

My son Regan is the same. If I just whisper “I’ll race you home,” he takes off at full speed before I’ve even finished speaking. It doesn’t matter if we’re riding bikes, walking, scooting, or kicking a soccer ball. He just has to try his hardest to win.

My daughter on the other hand, avoids competition like the plague. If I throw out the “let’s race home” statement, she’ll actually stop what ever she is doing, roll her eyes at me and then continue on as slowly as possible until I’ve lost interest. Which, I think, means she wins?

The few times I’ve suggested she join a competitive team, it’s met with a resounding “No!”

So, with Regan, we race, compete, and try our best to win, where with Rhyley, we relax and enjoy the activity strictly for fun. It’s a good mix for me and I appreciate the different approaches.

Last week we shuttled a good sized hill in Whistler to ride a few fun and technical downhill trails. Regan jumped out front to lead and Rhyley was happy to float along behind enjoying the ride. At the end when we hit the bottom of the trails, I started back up to retrieve the truck while Chenoa and the kids entertained themselves at the river and waited.

A few seconds into my climb, Rhyley went flying by me. She had decided to complete the climb as well.

“Are you sure Rhyley, there are some pretty steep bits on this climb?” I hinted.

“Yeah, I got this Dad.” she said through heavy breathing.”I’m going to climb the whole thing.”

I realized half way up while she was resting, that she might be a little competitive after all, but only with herself.

I suggested that if she was tired, she should walk a bit so we can keep moving, and she told me that the challenge was to ride the whole hill, and walking was not an option.

So, we continued up, and although she had a few short rests, she pedalled the entire way and, I couldn’t say it out loud, but I think she won that challenge.

I think we all have a bit of competitiveness in us, whether we admit it or not.

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

Campbell RiverCycling

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