Today I was glad my husband was willing to take a spur of the moment bike ride to get me out of the house and out of my head, so to speak. We picked a trail we had heard about from a friend of mine that went from Bethesda, MD to Georgetown. As we started down the trail, we noticed we were going downhill. I did not realize that much of this ride would be downhill. I started to get a little nervous about how bad the all up hill return trip was going to be. After 4+ miles of what seemed like all downhill, I noticed the riders coming from the other direction. Some were struggling, some were walking their bikes, some seemed to be grinding it out. I became more concerned about how we were going to make it back. And, the trail continued downward. Seriously? How could my friend not have mentioned this? This was not looking good. As we reached Georgetown and the Potomac River, I was excited to see all the boats, kayaks, paddle boards, and people enjoying the very hot and humid Labor Day holiday. We rode on a little further and enjoyed the lively atmosphere. After a short stop, we started our return trip. We were pedaling along and I kept thinking, “OK, the big hills are going to start any minute now. Just hang in there until you can’t.” We stopped for water and we were working a little, but I knew the worst was coming. We’d be walking our bikes any time now. We passed the landmarks we had seen on our way down, but our return trip seemed to be so much shorter in reverse. And, then we were on the busy street corner and a short city block from the parking garage. How could this be? How did we get up those hills and do the hard looking ride almost effortlessly? I knew why. Because we are stronger than we think we are. We are capable of tremendous feats of physical strength. Just before we walked out the door for our ride, we watched Diana Nyad, age 64, reach the sandy beach in Florida after an over 52 hour swim from Cuba in an incredibly hot ocean filled with jellyfish and sharks. Her swim is an extreme example of how strong we can be — physically and mentally. So, while I thought at first those hills were going to be too hard for me at the end of our ride, I should have known I’m stronger than I think I am.