During a visit to Boulder's equivalent to Disneyland (Valmont Bike Park) on his new Strider balance bike, my two-year-old son got this look in his eye and I knew that was it. (I think most of you reading this know what I mean)
Although he still doesn't really get the idea of pushing himself along with his feet, he loved whirling around both pumptracks at mach speed, feet up on the footrests, while mommy pushed him as fast as her own little legs could run. Somehow, after every round, he was just as breathless as I was. You gotta wonder how many calories a person could burn if they felt this same level of excitement for an hour every day?
Then, still breathless and without breaking his permagrin, he'd say, "Do it again, Mommy?" I didn't mind because, one, running as fast as I could pushing 25 pounds around a pumptrack was a great workout for me, and two, I could see that this was the spark to the same life long love affair with bikes and the outdoors that has blessed my own life. (Plus, bike parks make it easy to sneak in a few good laps yourself!)
Perhaps I will be lucky and there will be a Boulder toddler ride at IMBA's 2013 Take A Kid Mountain Biking Day.