The trick was to go first thing in the morning, before the day´s worries, commitments and distractions noticed I was out of bed. The trick was to remember that no matter how important all those worries, commitments and distractions were, there´d be time for them when I got back.
At first, getting out first thing in the morning was an ordeal. It is winter in Brasilia, after all, which is not to say much, but it does add to the list of excuses for not getting out of bed to go biking in the early morning. I´d set the alarm to 7 o´clock, and at first, I´d have to hit the snooze button a few times before peeling myself out of bed, by which time I´d convince myself that it was way too late to bike. Nowadays, after biking 21 days out of 25, by the time the clock goes off I´ve got out of bed, got dressed, made and eaten breakfast, done my spiritual reading and meditation, and am waiting for the elevator (next step: start taking the stairs!).
Biking is meditation: 10.87km of meditation, to be exact. In these 40 minutes (plus or minus 3), I say the rosary of the day as I think of the day ahead and the spiritual readings of that morning. I pass by three Catholic churches evenly spaced through my route – so that´s six special moments of praise and adoration, petition and intercession, meditation and reflection, atonement and resolution, as I cross through traffic crossing myself.
I set out with questions and return with answers. I think of what I have to do, who I´m going to see, what I´m going to say, the email and the post I´m going to write, what I´m feeling and why that is so, and applying all these frustrations and desires against the pedals, I find more diplomatic ways to make my feeling known, to others and to myself.