How I Stay Inspired | A daily dose of the outdoors

Sunset over the Anza Borrego. Is your spirit for adventure inspired?

An epic sunset over the mountains in the Western Anza Borrego. Photo Credit: Evan Christiansen

What Inspires Me?

The first episode included snapshots of my life, so I thought I’d share a few things that have inspired me in the past along with some things that are keeping me motivated while I’m (mostly) confined to the walls of my home.

What got my pedals turning?

Before I was even born, my parents decided to name me after their bike mechanic. I was destined to grow up on bikes. My parents love telling a story about how I used to sneak out of the house naked to take my tricycle for a spin. It wasn't their fault, I just couldn't wait to get outside. Who needs pants anyway?

Now I didn't just tell this story because it's humorous. It certainly is. But to me, this story alludes to something meaningful. It's the first sign that I loved bikes. At 3 years old, at a time I have no cognitive memory of I was exploring, on one of many adventure to come. Though I found this passion so early, I think it's important to know that you can fall in love with running, cycling, hiking, or anything fitness related at almost any stage in life.

No, there's no bonus prize for, "I was trail running before you". If you found your thing later in life or you're still searching, that's fine. Keep looking for your thing.

What kept me interested in cycling?

As I grew older, the distances that I could ride grew further. I thought of myself as a fearless explorer constantly expanding my horizons and seeing new places. I was on a quest to climb the next hill. My small mental map of the local trail network expanded as I pedaled out to new places. The Santa Monica mountains above Thousand Oaks California were vast, beautiful, and in my backyard. That desire to see what's over the next hill still resides in me today as strong as ever.

The carefree years of youth lend themselves to endless hours of exploration and I certainly made the most of those years. Today at 30 years of age, my adventures require a little more planning. The benefit is that I can now drive to meet up with friends and turn at least one weekend a month into an epic adventure that makes for the best smiles, miles, and memories. This takes a little planning and a lot of prioritizing.

Descending into the chaos of the city below. Riding inspired is important.

Silver linings come in many forms. This fun short descent is a great example. Photo Credit: Edward Carpio

How do I stay inspired at home during quarantine?

Quarantine. It’s been frustrating to say the least. I’ve spent my time planning future adventures, shopping for gear I can’t afford, and looking for content to sate my suppressed wanderlust. Fortunately, there are an abundance of You-Tubers pushing out great content to go along with all the wonderful documentaries streaming from numerous providers.

I've found myself more anxiously waiting for video drops from content creators such as Seth's Bike Hacks, Lanterne Rouge, and Safa Brian just to name a few. The real personalities can help make you feel as if you're on the adventure rather than watching a story about someone else's life. With that in mind, the less personal productions coming from the likes of InCycle and Global Cycling Network are great as well.

Adventure Planning

I love daydreaming about the next place I want to go to ride my bike or hike. Instead of passively missing all the places you’ve gone and want to go, sit down and make the list! Give thought to every detail from gear, to the playlist you’ll need to get you in the mood.

Shopping for Gear:

Hey, you might not be able to afford it but if you have the spare cash, many companies are offering deals right now to stay afloat. Look around and see what’s out there. Just a few weeks back my dream gravel bike went on sale at The Pro's Closet. I've been dreaming of adding a gravel bike to my life as I launch my own content and couldn't resist! I might as well plug SportRx here because we’re doing sales right now too!

Content for Days:

But seriously guys, there are so many great sports documentaries and YouTube channels out there to get you inspired. I’ve loved watching my favorite channels like Seth’s Bike Hacks grow over the last few years. These days, I’m scheduling time for the Friday video drop in between work calls! As a novice adventurist and fledgling influencer, I love mediums like YouTube. They've become treasure chests laden with inspiring sports clips, personal stories, and information to keep me inspired.

Working Out at Home

Many amateur endurance athletes focus their training on their sport. They run, swim, cycle but take a more casual approach to stretching and non endurance work. As a cyclist I am often guilty of this. I prioritize my training on the bike and often neglect my core work, body weight work, and stretching. This leads to tight stiff legs and inevitable steps backward in fitness.

What better time than now, to add these supplementary workouts into your routine? Start building some routines to help make you a more rounded athlete. Your performance and body will thank you!

Fridays Live With Me, Let's get Inspired!

As I looked over my notes before I went live on Friday, I kept circling back to one of my main themes. How to stay motivated when you can’t do the things you love.

It’s not an exact science and something that motivates one person, may not do it for others. However, there is one thing that I believe applies to most people. It’s that finding the silver linings in everyday life is essential. All to often we take the good in life for granted and devote our attention to the grandest things in life. That can make it pretty tough to stay inspired.

You may not be riding a bike on a gravel path through the Sierra Nevada’s, you may not be running along the coast watching the sun’s first rays touch the water, and you can’t just meet some friends for a beer down the street. But you can reach out to friends. You can plan for the future! Lastly, you can get stoked off of other peoples stories!

Stay inspired, stay safe, and get stoked! Can't wait to see you next Friday!