I recently told this story again, and decided it was finally time to write it down. This took place in about 2004.

Years ago my friend and I were mountain biking in Whistler. We’d been riding A-line laps all afternoon and we were winding the day down. We caught up to a rider on the last major set of jumps and the rider was going big with stylish whips. We trailed behind and pulled into the lift line.

When we loaded the chair, we found that it was just us and the rider we’d caught up to. The fellow took off his helmet and he had a shock of long white hair that tumbled to his shoulders. My friend leaned forward and looked over at him and said “Hey, I gotta ask… what can I do now so that I can be riding as hard as you in thirty years?”

The man laughed and said “Yeah, I’m still doing it.”

He thought for a moment and gave us three lesssons. Here they are, as best as word for word as I remember.

  1. Don’t run unless it’s because of a beautiful woman. Running is stupid, don’t do it.
  2. If you get injured, go to the doctor, go to the physical therapist, do the yoga and stay stong. You’re in charge of the maintenance. Be willing to give up the season to have the lifetime.
  3. Eat as many almonds, blueberries, watermelon, and vegetables as possible. Drink nothing but skim milk.

He then said “That will pretty much take care of you.”

I occasionally wonder if he’s still riding, I really hope that he’s somewhere in BC putting in long singletrack miles.