Temptations of the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath & the Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Congrats to Katie (@ktb0981) – you’ve won the #DazzleCLE PlayhouseSquare swag prize pack! Don’t forget about tonight’s lighting event starting at 5:00PM – there’s more info here.

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Last Friday, I failed to mention one of my non-yoga favorite things about our San Francisco trip to yoga teacher training. We rented a great house just south of the UC Berkeley campus that came with bikes to get around the area. My buddy Kevin is an expert cyclist and has plenty of experience riding around metro areas. While I was nervous biking in the streets at first, I learned a lot from him and gained road riding confidence quick. Along with all those hours in the studio, the moments biking were just as much ones I won’t forget from California.

So when I got home to Cleveland, I knew what had to be done:  Stella, my Trek, had to get ready for the 2014 riding season.

Bike Authority Broadview Heights Ohio

Bike Authority in Broadview Heights knocked it out of the park, turning around the bike tune up in less than 24 hours from drop off the night before. The only problem was I couldn’t pick it up for three days. But once I had it again, I took advantage of the stellar weekend weather and headed down to the Cuyahoga Valley National Park to see if I still had my towpath riding legs from last year.

CVNP Mile Marker 20

Turns out I did. 15 windy miles done on Saturday…

CVNP Mile Marker 25

…and 16 easier miles Sunday. That’s when I discovered my new 2014 past time: seeing how many mile markers I could visit this year. Game on.

CVNP Mile Marker 13

On a side note: the fuzz and I went out for a 40 minute walk a few Sundays ago. We both came home with big smiles on our face. One of us came home with four ticks. Just be warned, kids: it’s going to be another buggy year for our fuzzy friends, so do what you have to to keep your pups safe. And thanks to Central Bark, also in Broadview Heights, for some extra peace of  mind.

But after a rough week with long hours and rainy days, I’m jones-ing to be back on the bike. I feel like it has a similar effect as my yoga practice – after a lengthy ride, my mind is clear, my body is strong and life is good. And I usually come home with a bit of sun on my nose. Le sigh, is it summer yet? 

Just those first 31 miles in two days re-inspired me. Just like in Berkeley, I saw that authentic version of myself again when I could just let go, relax and surround myself in what was around me in the moment — not the story build up in my head because of a very busy mind.  Just like in meditation: when the mind is clear, so is your perception of what surrounds you. These things keep me grounded, keep me clear, keep me focused.  So if it ain’t broke… make more space for it.

But with a rainy weather forecast and a busy event weekend, I may have to just stick to daydreaming about Stella instead of getting her out on the path. And that’s why you have to keep many tools in your toolbox to keep up the maintenance of a healthy body and mind.  Luckily, it’s just barely May and there’s plenty of time left for towpath-ing in 2014. So let me know if you’re interested in joining me: either for a leisurely stroll, a fast ride or some yoga in the park. This extrovert can’t help bringing folks along for the ride…

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One comment

  1. Heather says:

    I adore the towpath! I meet friends for walks there as often as possible. Lmk when you’re headed up and if I’m free I’ll join you!

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