A coworker used the phrase in the title a couple of weeks ago to describe the mindset needed to work in a tactical environment. As he put it, “if someone is shooting at you, you press the fight, you move forward to eliminate the threat.” I certainly don’t work in a tactical environment, but the phrase stuck in my head and I’ve tried to adapt that mindset to other situations in my life. Maybe I’ve always done it–just a little–but now I have a phrase to mutter to myself while pressing forward.
I used the phrase last weekend while struggling up a long gravel road in Westchester, NY. I’d been up the road from the other direction once or twice. Depending on my fitness level, it is either tough or it outright sucks. I hadn’t been riding too many hills before last weekend’s ride, so it was more toward the “suck” end of the spectrum; luckily there was a cool breeze to prevent overheating. It would have been easy to pull over half way and take a breather but, armed with my new phrase, I pressed the fight to the top of the climb and then flew down the other side at nearly 45 mph. Keep moving forward.
I’m not a big fan of the rain. I never begin a ride in the rain. If it rains while I’m already out, I’ll don a jacket and keep riding. I’ve bailed on events I paid money to enter based on the threat of rain. Until recently, the thought of purposefully setting out in the rain seemed foolish. Why would I knowingly subject myself to the slop and aggravation associated with a long, wet ride?
And then my mindset slowly began to change. There are a lot of otherwise nice days that just happen to include rain. My main riding opportunities occur on the weekends, and it rains on the weekends. I realized I was limiting myself, retreating if you will, from some good opportunities. Moreover, what’s the point of having a fender bike if it never gets wet?! So a couple of months ago I ordered some rain pants and waterproof gloves from Showers Pass with the goal of extending my riding into days that include rain, serious rain, and not being reluctant to start a ride in the rain.
As luck would have it, today was the first weekend day that would allow me to Press the Fight against rain. The weather was truly crappy with wind driven rain and coastal flooding. The wind was ferocious enough that I waited until after lunch time to suit up. Bib shorts. Wool t-shirt. Rain pants. Rain jacket. Winter boots. Waterproof gloves.
Out to the garage I went to pump a few pounds of air into the tires. Open garage door. Clip in and exit garage. Rain stops!
Press the Fight. Eliminate the threat.