Two weeks into my skiing career, and I’m addicted. My second visit to Mammoth was super rad.
The great thing about starting a new hobby is the swift progression you can make. My ego is loving this shit! Soon I’ll plateau, but right now I’m progressing in leaps and bounds.
Saturday, we took the gondola to the top and then skied down the back of the mountain. Black runs, no beginners, no easy way back. It was a successful mission, but I fell going down a particularly steep slope and panicked. I hurt my knee and started to doubt myself.
My boyfriend/reluctant ski instructor observed that I needed more speed to make the turns properly, which is when it clicked: my fear-ridden brain was telling me to go slower, when I needed to go faster and trust that momentum would do the trick.
You could call it an a-ha! moment.
“It felt like a metaphor for life. Lean in.
Have confidence. Be calm. Trust.”
It’s these counter-intuitive evolutions that make me to adore this new pastime. Like surfing, I have to read the elements and re-train my scaredy-cat mind. The challenge is more psychological than physical – I have to overcome the abject fear that arises when you’re standing on the precipice and can’t see what’s over the edge.
I also have to have resolute, unwavering confidence in myself.
Monday, knee rested and courage restored, we did three black runs, including the one I’d fallen on two days previously, with total success. I didn’t fall once all day – instead, I focused on my breath (through the nose, calm, even), cleared my mind (my mantra “I’ve got this” banished doubts and concern about the superior skiers and boarders gliding past me) and leant in rather than pulling back.
It felt like a metaphor for life. Lean in. Have confidence. Be calm. Trust.
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