After keeping a pretty safe hold on the handbrake, I decided to release and commit fully to following the imaginary line on the trail. A bump in the trail sent me soaring. After landing softly, I approached a turn and, as instructed, I slowly pumped the brake. I reached the turn, let go of the brake, and by leaning away from the trail allowed my bike to fly up towards the ridge. My finger instinctively wanted to push the brake, but my mind yelled “NO!” I kept the trigger happy finger at bay and flew around the bend. I let out a big “Yahoo!” I couldn’t help it. I had just experienced the mountain biking high after hitting the trails for the first time at Silver Mountain Resort in Kellogg, Idaho.

New Adventures Post-Partum

I am afraid to admit it but allowing myself to go mountain biking for the first time was not easy. Before hopping on my bike, pretty much every little bit of self doubt was running through my mind. “I am not as strong as I used to be” “my abs are pretty much non-existent” “my fitness is so low”. I shoved the momentary self-doubt from my mind and remembered that it was about trying something new. And really, if I needed to, I could always get off my bike and walk.

Once I got past that bit of self-doubt, my day could not have gone any better.  After finishing the green Crescent Run I went up the chair lift and decided to check out the Payday and Cool Neatness trails. Both of these are green runs too, but they were a step up from the Crescent Run. They have more turns and I soon realized that trusting the bike on a turn was hard.

At the bottom I was determined to learn the skills needed to really enjoy these trails. I spoke to some local riders and they gave me a few helpful tips. That was my first lesson when trying to learn a new skill by yourself — Do not be afraid to reach out, especially to a community like the mountain bike crew. They are just excited to see someone new hitting the trails and trying out the sport.

One more run down Payday before meeting up with Cam and the kids. My adrenaline was high as I came around the corner without putting my foot down or falling. I felt so strong and oh so alive. It was not just because I had successfully made the corner. I had tried something that was a little bit scary and totally out of my comfort zone.  It can’t believe that I had almost decided not to try mountain biking. But, I had shoved the self-doubt out of my mind. I had allowed myself  to continue to adventure post-partum.


By Annika Mang


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