What We Can Learn from the Mind of a Champion

By Michael Reger

After an impromptu workout with Uta, Take The Magic Step’s® Michael Reger was inspired to capture his thoughts.

I was out on a bike ride with Uta last night. Not a very long ride, but 20 miles on a beautiful New England evening. We rode past farms, stately old houses, up and down hills and finished with the sun glowing red through the trees as we headed for home.

Upon arriving back at the house, Uta wanted to know how far we cycled. When I told her 19.9 miles, she was mildly disappointed at missing the 20-mile mark, but happy about the fun of doing something good for fitness, enjoying the nature and spending some quality time together in the fresh evening air. She said somewhere along the ride that she always has fun being outside and getting some exercise. She meant it.

In one month is the Pan Mass Challenge, one of the top fundraising events in the country. Uta will be part of the opening ceremonies out at the start, the night before the ride in Sturbridge, Massachusetts. On Saturday morning, with less than 40 miles seat time on the bike to prepare for the ride, she will ride 86 miles from Wellesley to Bourne along with 4,000 riders.

The lessons about fitness are always numerous when spending time around Uta. There is never a shortage of inspiration. The “never give up” attitude is always present, and never in the form of a lecture, just living by example. Granted, she is not your average Joe, planning on jumping on a bike and riding a pretty good one day’s worth. Still, the attitude of a champion never ceases to amaze me. Upon getting off the bike, Uta did a quick calculation and said, “We only have to do that a little more than three more times for the Pan Mass Challenge.” Anybody who has ever sat on a bike seat for five or six hours knows it is not as easy at that sounds. With little bike training, there is still a fair amount of effort involved.

There is no doubt in my mind that Uta will ride the 86 miles in August. She will be happy to be with the people and doing her part for a good cause. Sore and tired from a long day, doing something she really didn’t train for won’t deter her joy of exercising and “never give up, I can do it if I try” attitude. There is a lesson in that for all of us.

For more information on the Pan-Mass Challenge, visit our “Giving“ section.