I’ve Biked 1,000 Miles This Year. So What?

And I would walk five hundred miles
And I would walk five hundred more
Just to be the man who walked a thousand miles
To fall down at your door

–The Proclaimers, “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)”

Occasionally I tend to geek out on what I’m doing number-wise with my bicycle.  Today, it was passing 1,000 miles for 2018 thus far.  Not too shabby, but not as much as in 2016 (where I rode 5,306 miles) or in 2017 (where I rode 4,714 miles).  At this rate, by the end of 2018, I’ll end up just shy of riding 3,200 miles.  With the weather warming up, I expect I will increase my weekly goal from 50 miles to 75 or even 100.  But as my unemployment money dwindles, I will find myself scrambling for income, and that could diminish my activity level significantly.  A Dude’s gotta eat and have a roof.  But the numbers and what’s behind them are interesting, so click on to read the rest of this post.

1000 miles in 2018.png
And  I did ride 500 miles and I did ride 500 more…

Statistics, Schmatistics

The most important statistic for me this year isn’t about miles.   It’s word count.  And so far, it’s  pretty high.  88,000+ words, actually.  (See graphic below.) And that’s not including the 60,000+ I’ve probably written in my book.  Riding 50 miles per week has allow me to write 500 words per day.  And I’m happy about that.

A fellow Texan who blogs about her health journey, JulieCares, made the comment “1,000 miles is further than what most people ever ride a bike in a lifetime.”  I’m not so sure about that.  The temptation is to compare oneself to others.  Buddha said, “Comparison is the death of joy.”   He was correct.  Who needs that?  The only person I or you need to do that to is ourself.  And even then, gently.

Two years ago I made it a goal to bike 100 miles per week.  Somehow, I did it.  I was also two years younger and not having some major issues with iron deficiency.  Although it turns out that most of my lab results like hemoglobin and ferritin are in the normal range, so maybe I’m not anemic at all.  Point is:  do your best.  So sure, have goals.  Try your damndest to beat the hell out of them and do better.  But have a life too.  Have fun.  Just don’t have a cow, man!

From So What to Now What?

Wordpress stats as of 042718
WordPress stats.  Lots of words and numbers and stuff.

What I’ve learned about myself after all this bicycling (10,00 miles in two years) is that I can do far more than what people think, including me.  Being active while overweight is an obstacle and a concern, sure, but it’s not insurmountable or a reason to quit.  I’m a fathlete.  Stop judging from the safety of your couch.  You know who else are fat athletes?  Sumo wrestlers!  Sure they’re heavy, but those guys are fit and strong AF.

My point is that it’s always been my choice to have a hardcore slavish adherence to meet a specific numeric goal, or ride for necessity and also, for fun.  It’s up to me whether I put in the extra time and effort to make it to 100 miles, or 50 miles, or 150 miles.  They are all OK.  Even 0, if I want a break.  I’m walking, I’m doing yoga, I’m eschewing virtually all processed grains and writing daily.  (I appreciate the irony of that word choice — eschewing — for something about eating.)  Goals are great!  But let them be your guide and work for you, not the other way around.

Now that it’s gone from 88 degrees F from my first ride today at 12:30 pm to 57 degrees F after a cool front blew in some rains that have since departed, I know what to do.  Not because I have to, but because I want to:  Ride my bike.  Just for fun.   No errands, backpack, route-plotting, planning for food, clean shorts and Chamois Butter, and no mileage goal, none of that. I’m just going to go for a joy ride.  Because if you’re not experiencing joy while riding a bike, at least some of the time, you’re doing it wrong.  Amirite?  Yes.

Post-Script:  Joy Ride Report

Refresthing Post-Rain Ride 042518.png
Nessy the Loch Ness monster statue, Stella restaurant which I photographed for Stella Bailey, a fellow blogger, and a sign from the Austin Film Society (I was going to see a French film tonight at their Cinema but didn’t feel like reading a movie), but they’re a great Austin institution.

So I went and tooled around, with no particular place to go.  Three cool things came out of tonight, aside from having a lovely time biking.  First, I learned that Nessy sculpture’s eyes pictured above has eyes which glow blue at night.  Second, I was roaming around and passed by the store where I got my TV, so I stopped in.  I complained that it still isn’t let me mirror bike racing videos from my laptop.  They reminded me that I have a five-year service plan, so they’ll fix or replace it for free!  And, after eyeing some slightly worse for wear chicken wings at the 7-11, I bargained for them to be reduced 25%.

My point is that good things happen when you leave the house.  (Usually.)  At least the neighbor dogs didn’t escape from the front door and try to attack me like they did yesterday.  They didn’t because I screamed bloody murder at them and they backed off and then were taken away by the son-in-law who is now on my liste du merde.  But that also helped me to focus on the present moment more, to be grateful that I wasn’t injured, and live to ride another day.  By the way, A Dude loves dogs.  He just can’t eat a whole one.

Thus concludes the rant — and this blog post.

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11 thoughts on “I’ve Biked 1,000 Miles This Year. So What?

  1. One of the old men I was talking used to ride 20 miles per day Dude and he was in his best of health.
    Your stats show your number is decreasing by the years. Yes Comparison is the death of JOY, so no comparison….🙄🤔😉
    All the Best to YOU with miles of biking and words.
    🎶💞🌷🔔
    Shiva

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I chose a goal of 80 miles in 2016 after estimating 3,000-3,500 in 2015. I did 5,306 which was an incredible achievement with my situation and full-time job. Then to make it to 10,000, I did 4,714 in 2017. This year I chose a goal of 50 miles/week to give myself a break and so I could write my book and blog. But heakth has made it hard, although I’m exceeding that 59 mile goal at the moment, for now. Job, car, life, sleep, illness, accident, etc. could all get in the way. My goal is to be healthier, and numbers are nice but ultimately don’t mean much. Walking and yoga take an hour a day, and swimming and weightlifting are other activities I may try, too. Best to you as well sir!

      Like

  2. OMG!!!!! Steelllaa! That is so awesome and so is the post! Lol you made me smile so much! Thank you for taking the awesome photo! I’ll have to eat there when I visit Austin.:) Dude! You know you can freeze what you don’t eat?!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I do keep a count using my Garmin. I’m not on Strava. Just checked and I’ve done 956km which is pretty poor for me but largely weather related.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I love your stat thing, is that a phone app or something!

    You and Julie Cares are really making me feel more motivated to get up and do something physical tomorrow, thank you!!!

    I haven’t had a bike in so long. I need to get one. I used to love riding.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Dear Fiery K., yes, Strava works on the phone and I take screen shots on computer. Though I find a Garmin watch is alot easier and doesn’t require data being on the phone all the time. It’s helpful to motivate me and can be used for walking, running, and many other sports. Julie is great and very active, probably more than I am! Biking is easier on the joints but wakling is good too. Where are you? Is it a good place to bike?

      Liked by 1 person

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