Friday, October 23, 2009

My Muse

It is strange indeed to find myself completely at home on a spin bike. Thanks to our adventures with H1N1, I haven't been able to go to class in two weeks, but with Grandma in town, I was finally able to go on Thursday, and it was glorious.

I was afraid it would kick my tush after such a long break (and I had hardly been consistent since our trip to Mexico anyway), but instead it welcomed me back like an old friend, reassuring me I hadn't lost a year and half of investment in two measley weeks. I pedaled hard and exchanged niceties with a few of the other regulars and downed my water and thought.

This is the best part of spin class: complete mental freedom. There is something about having my body so completely engaged that releases my mind to go to places it doesn't otherwise. It's a crazy twist on the mind-body connection. I get the body busy--going so hard it doesn't have the energy to be in its own way--and I lose myself in the music, reflecting on everything from the kids to recent sermons to how brilliant my husband is to So You Think You Can Dance (I'll confess: I love that show). In fact, most of my blogging ideas or epiphanies occur on that bike.

It's like my muse. Or at the very least, it gets enough of my "flesh" out of the way that I can actually hear the Muse.

Whatever the case, that stationary bike is good for more than just my body: I walk out of there refreshed, at peace, feeling strong and capable, filled with the clarity I need to handle the next preschool or toddler crisis.

Sometimes I wonder if we were made this way--with a need to expend our physical energy in order to maintain perspective, with a wiring that requires us to come to the end of our tangible self in order to understand our inner self. I don't know for sure, but I do know that I have never felt as fulfilled or whole as I have since getting active. This, I think, is why I've been able to stick with it, why I actually crave it. It's like getting a fix for my entire being.

No wonder the proverbial "they" say that exercise is so good for you. But "they" really ought to tell you it's about so much more than BMI's or scales or physical strength or endorphins.

At least for me, it's about being well with my soul.


  1. Shaundra,
    Well put. Thanks for the reminder... about now, not tomorrow or 10 years from now. I know this family. My heart aches for them.

  2. Oh, I'm so sorry. It's painful to hear and think about even for me, and I do not know them. I can't imagine how much deeper the heartache runs for those who know... Thanks for the affirmation of enjoying the present.


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