Being humble, this one’s been one of the harder ones to write. I don’t know why, but I just keep getting writers block on this one. I went back to a whole bunch of the negative articles I wrote and re read a bunch. Out of all of those, I learned that: I don’t want to be that negative again, it’s no fun reading/writing negative stuff, and BOY did I come of snobbish and far from humble.
It’s been an interesting 10 months since I started this blog. I’ve learned a lot about myself, who I am, and who I want to be. I have learned to stay quiet, listen and learn, still there’s lots to learn from a lot of people and most importantly I still have to learn how no to talk over or humble brag.
Humility, begins by being the rider you wish to ride with.
It’s that simple, would you like to find the worst version or the best version of yourself out on a ride? Would you rather find someone that helps or one that scoffs and belittles you for not knowing how to solve a problem? Would you want to ride with yourself cutting corners and being overly aggressive? Do you want to hang out with yourself one upping and humble bragging every conversation? Be the best version of yourself that you would like to meet on a ride.
It’s the little things that help with humility.
I get so caught up in going fast on some trails, that I admit, sometimes I’m not the most patient back tire rider and I’ll ride close until I can pass. Absolutely hate it when others do it to me, however I find myself doing that to others. Sometimes trails fill up, sometimes no matter how much of a lead time you give, you’re going to catch up to a slower rider. Keep a peaceful demeanor and pass when really possible in a friendly way. After all, it’s just a trail and just a ride. No, that slower rider won’t kill the vibe or ruin the day.
Don’t put others down
Remember we all learn at different speeds and we all peak at different moments. We’re all good at different things. Some will excel on climbs, some will ace rock gardens, some will get jumping right away; most of us will take time to learn that stuff. Help and support, it’s taken me years to muster up the courage to start trying tiny jumps.
Bike price does not equal to talent
You can’t put someone down or discredit them because they ride a hand me down or an older bike. Now, there’s nothing wrong with owning a top of the line bike; but the bike on its own won’t make you a better rider. A couple of years ago, I did an enduro race in Morelia while we were in the truck’s flatbed getting shuttled up to the first stage I saw a couple of guys in spandex and old XC bikes. I did do a double take and thought, “oh boy, they don’t know what they’re getting into!” I did hear some chatter on how everyone was going to pass them. How they were going to slow everyone down since they didn’t have a full sus or pads.
Well, not only did a whole bunch of “enduro bro” riders drop out of the race, but these dudes managed to finish without looking beat and exhausted. I put them down in my head, because of the bike and outfit, and I shouldn’t have, they humbly let the riding do the talking.
Trailhead humble brag
Like I mentioned at the start, this is an issue for me. Not just because I catch myself unintentionally doing it; but because it really irks me when someone else is doing it. You just started jumping? Yeah, well I jump 20 ft gaps with sharks easy. It’s that constant one upping of “oh, yeah, well my story’s better than you”. Whether it’s criticizing a trail in front of a trail builder having zero dig experience; or automatically assuming you’re better that a girl; or just showing off and one upping everyone, even the pros and semi pros, that just comes of as trying to hard.
Keep it quiet, simple and humble; let your riding do the talking for you. Stories, epics and adventures can be talked over beers or after riding, not showing off to impress before riding.
So in Micayla Gatto’s words: “take a seat bro and be humble…boy, stop hating go ride your freaking bike”. Remember it’s just mountain biking, the most important non-important thing we do to blow off stress and have fun.