My co-worker Kelly likes to run. She always wears headphones to listen to music and audio books. I told her I used to run 70 miles per week and never wore headphones.
Kelly: “If I ran that far without headphones I’d lose my mind.”
Me: “That’s the whole point!!”
The best parts of my runs back in the day and the best parts of my bike rides today happen when I am on autopilot. It’s just me, the pavement or trail, and my body. My mind goes to another place. The sure sign of a good ride is when I have that “How did I get here?” thought. (This sometimes causes me to miss a turn. Then I actually need an answer!)
There are times (lots of them) when my brain goes round and round on a subject as I am rolling along. Work. Relationships. Plans. That jerk in the car that nearly killed me. More often than not, the rhythm of the ride short circuits the internal chatter and I go back to my trance.
Any time I read a decription of simple breathing meditation I am reminded of my bike rides. Which is why a yoga-loving friend of mine calls my bike commutes “your meditation.”
If you get bored while you are riding, go with it. Let your thoughts take a mini vacation. Just until the next intersection. Then do it again. And again. Your thoughts have earned it. So have you.
You won’t get lost, but you might get found.