Like most of my friends, I’m one of the many people out there that can’t live without their iPhone. I just can’t put it down, and it goes with me everywhere I go. No excuses.
However, I do have a rule about going mountain biking- and it’s that I turn my phone off, or at the least to silent. I simply leave a message that I’ll be riding and will get back to them later. My mountain biking time is my time apart from the working world- my thinking time and the last thing I want are work colleagues, friends and loved ones taking up my precious time.
Selfish? Hell yes. But mountain biking is the single thing that keeps me ticking. And not many people would understand that.
It’s the thing I do when I’m frustrated to help me open my mind. When I’m happy it enhances my mood; when I’m sad it cheers me up. When I’m angry it calms me down- mountain biking gives me everything and without it I’d be nothing. I don’t live to ride- I ride to live.
And I certainly wouldn’t ride with headphones in. My day-to-day life is polluted with music, noise and other distractions- when I’m out riding I want to feel the terrain. I want to hear the grip my tyres have; the noise twigs make as they snap and crunch under tyre; the slosh of puddles and the rumble of tyres on hard pack. Mountain biking to me is best when my senses are working over time- my sight, sound and even smell. I can talk a ride with the smell of warm tarmac in the rain, the smell of animals in fields, the smell of wild garlic in the woods and the lube on my chain.
Mountain biking is a sensory overload, and I simply don’t have time for the rest of the world to be involved. You should try disconnecting every once in a while- it’s a satisfying feeling.