Everyday when I get on my bike I learn something new about the transformative powers of cycling. Creative thoughts flow. If I’m angry or hurting, somehow cycling helps me work through those feelings, and turn that energy to the positive. Cycling is constructive. Cycling and sport in general helps us focus our energies, overcome fear and use our life for the good.
When I watched a story on New Mexico’s opioid crisis, it made me think of how cycling can change our course. Then my friend sent a link to a video of Juanjo Mendez’s story. Juanjo was injured in a motorbike crash, and felt depressed afterwards. But cycling brought him back.
Dr. Leslie Hayes in Rio Arriba County suggests the real solution to drugs is to get meaningful things in peoples’ lives. We are not going to arrest or medically treat our way out of the opioid crisis. We need love. Stories like Juanjo Mendez’s are proof cycling adds meaning and hope.
Cycling helps us cope with pain and trauma. If addiction is an effort to avoid pain, as Dr. Gina Perez-Baron suggests, cycling and sport in general may be a constructive outlet to deal with our hurts in a healthier way, even focusing our energy to propel us towards our goals in sport and life. To get super proactive building healthier lives, we can promote cycling and healthy sport.
Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to inspire. It has the power to unite people in a way that little else does. It speaks to youth in a language they understand. Sport can create hope where once there was only despair. It is more powerful than government in breaking down racial barriers. —Nelson Mandela
“New Mexico deploys best practices to avoid the worst outcomes in the opioid crisis”
Photos are from Saturday’s ride https://www.strava.com/activities/1251054152