Why cyling 620+ miles in 7 days is like founding a company
I have a GREAT idea! Something that will change the world!!
Nobody knows how my bad ass idea is going to make this world better, and millions will be better off because of it. I might even charge for it.
Now, I need a logo.
Holy crap, how am i going to… [hire people, develop this product, build a website, file my taxes so i don’t get ripped off]. This is a bit harder than I thought it was going to be…
My first day on a 620+mile journey down the rocky, windy, hilly gorgeous California coast, to support the Challenged Athletes Foundation, has been 88 miles of delicious energy. it all started with 150+ people from around the country ready to ride in support of challenged athletes, with about 14 of those challenged athletes on the ride with us.
It was like Day 1 of starting my company GOTRIbal. The fire in my belly. The excitement to build something powerful and influential. The constant onslaught of ideas exploding in my brain.
And then the first hill.
And the second. The long second hill. The one I’ve never ridden, so I don’t know when it ends, or how steep an incline it will be around the next corner.
All this as I’m supposed to be enjoying the journey, and I see the “Group A” speedy riders flying by me.
I can’t help but think about the similarities between participating in an endurance event like this, and founding a start-up.
Random challenges I’ve never encountered (hills!), not knowing how long the challenge will last till I get over the hump (Hills!), and watching other Founders get investor funding, building awesome teams of people, and killing it with their product (Damn “Group A” over achievers!).
But the best thing about endurance sports (or a start-up) isn’t about speed. It’s about all the intangibles you sometimes lose sight of. The really cool things you build to be better.
Like, the strength and smarts about your equipment, your body and your threshold for pain ….
Then, it’s what you do with that development once you build it, like mentoring other founders or speaking at events, or writing blogs, making your business case smarter, your pitch deck more influential, or your financials cleaner….(or like a 620+ mile ride for Challenged Athletes Foundation).
Ultimately, doing any endurance event, like founding a start-up, is more about how persistent, tenacious and mentally strong you can be and not just how weak or strong you are.
And in this journey down the coast, I’m reminded [AGAIN!] how nobody succeeds in realizing a dream (starting a company, riding 620 miles, or running 1 mile) without the full blown support and belief of the people you surrounding you.
I can’t wait to see what Day 2 has in store.
Onward and upward, always.