As much as we push the wondrous effects of coffee before you hop on your bike what do you do when you're fully caffeinated but motivation to ride isn't there yet? Simply put, you don't "feel" like riding today. What do you do?

While there's a whole battery of questions you can ask that are like a diagnostics test ... am I sick? Overworked? Mid-life crisis? Are there other health issues? ... the reality is that there are days where you feel great, you're not sick, life is good, and you averted your mid-life crisis by buying a new bike. What about those days where you simply don't want to go for a ride?

Don't fret.

No, there's nothing wrong with you. No one will question your love for the sport and lifestyle of mountain biking. Maybe you simply want to sit in your pajamas all morning drinking coffee rather than mucking up your bike and clothes out on the trail in the rain. I know this is counterintuitive to the messages out there ... suck it up. You'll feel better one you're out on the trail. You only live once.

Listen, most of us don't earn a living by riding bikes. It's not a job nor obligation. Yes, even professional athletes need and take breaks from their beloved sports whether they ride bikes, play basketball, hockey, football, and the like. Most often we ride ride because we're driven by a passion for the sport and lifestyle of mountain biking since we're not paid to do this.

Sometimes a well-deserved day off the saddle is what you need to keep your passion lit. We all need to vary up our routine to fight monotony and boredom. I live close to Portland's new urban bike park that opened up over the summer. I was ecstatic. I thought, heck, I'll just ride this all of the time and work on my skills. No more always driving an hour just to ride on dirt. And I did. Three times a week I'd pedal over and do laps, work on lines in the skills area, and then have hill days where I'd climb over and over again. First month: Amazing! Second month: Fun. Third month: Maybe I should throw in some more road rides. Fourth month: Yeah, more road rides for sure.

I was in a rut and so I had to blow up my routine and do different things. I rode my gravel bike, took more trips to the coast with my family, spent more time at the gym, and the like. Here's what I discovered ... my love for mountain biking has been surging. The itch has engulfed me now.

All because I took some time off and varied up my routine. How about you?

Words by Sean Benesh, Loam Coffee Founder and Brand Manager. Photos by Robin Munshaw.