A Bonus, and How to Live Life to the Fullest

By Brian Carroll

It’s 5:40 am. It’s dark. It’s New England. It’s cold. Make that… real cold. 12 degrees. And yes, it’s still dark. The driveway of the local YMCA is near empty. Spin class in 5 minutes. Why? Taking my center bike in a room of half-asleep spinners, I pause for a look around. Most are over 50. I’m 51. Seems right to me. Who else but a hearty New Englander hell-bent on wellness is going to drag themselves into the spin den? Anything to fight Father Time. Yes, even in 12 degrees.

Photo courtesy of Brian Carroll.

Photo courtesy of Brian Carroll.

The crowd motivates me into a bike mount. My feet lock in. My legs begin to turn, driving the life into me. Jill, the ink-laced instructor cranks today’s favorite rock ballads into the stair climb of heart rate elevation. I’m doing this for me. Or is it for my wife? My kids? My job? My friends? I want to share my life with those I love. Yeah, this motivation fills my legs while the rock n roll fills my ears. I’m spinning. I’m alive.

I’m also tired 55 minutes later.

Back to a resting heart rate an hour or so later, a smile from ear to ear fills my face as I sit in one of my Pivot® Life Insurance executive staff meetings at 8:00 am. I watch the coffee cups go up and down. The staff is trying to wake up. Each lift of hand to caffeine-starved mouth reminds me of each leg lift I did only a short time before. Did I hit 105 rpms of the spin wheel? Or was it 85 rpms? I think it was both at different times.

I am awake. I’ve lived a day of life and I have the rest of the day as a bonus. A bonus for enduring what anyone else my age knows all too well is important – how to live life to the fullest.

And yes, my caffeine at the staff meeting tasted a bit better.

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