The shortest month of the year, albeit one with a Leap Day, was not as prolific as January, but by all accounts, still successful for your favorite aging, tired, undertall bicyclist blogger. There are two major reasons for that: I continued riding my bike every single day, with an eye on making at least 100 miles per week, and also the addition of swimming. So let’s have a look under the er, bottom bracket, shall we?
As you can see from the above chart, I peaked in December and have reduced miles since. The big effort of 712 miles cycled wasn’t sustainable, especially with some cold weather, being a bit under the weather, and work. Plus going to the gym to swim reduces time I would otherwise spend on the bike. It’s all good though, because diversifying my workouts will only help, and the hot tub is a real boon to my constantly tired and sore muscles. So the total of 474 includes 422 cycling, 50 walking and 2.5 miles of swimming. I’m happy with it.
March 1-2 I rode 64 miles, so through the first two months of 2020 I was at 922 miles biked. I’m almost to 1,000, but to hit 5,500 for the year I’ll need to stick to this regimen of about 16 miles a day. Ideally I’d take at least two days off a week, making it 22 times 5. Some days I do very little, like one to five miles, so that’s as good as a rest day. Other days I do 30 or more, and that’s tough when there’s no rest day afterward. Hell, it’s all tough in different degrees, but I do it, somehow.
I’m also still doing a half hour walk, half an hour of yoga, and the aforementioned swimming about once a week, so I’m never really resting sufficiently. I kinda wanna see how far I can go with this daily riding. Maybe I’ll quit April 11, which would be a day after six months of no breaks. But probably not. What drives me to keep doing it — weight loss, muscle gain, recreation, being outside, transportation — are still all valid reasons. Something will eventually give; I’ll have to borrow a car for work, maybe I’ll have a crash or injury or, who knows, maybe I’ll get coronavirus, or some other illness. Life doesn’t care about our petty human goals.
Though walking stayed the same, biking did decrease. Going by the daily average of 16 miles, I was only short of the goal by 46 miles. That’s easily recouped next month. My biggest gain was in swimming. As mentioned in previous posts, I joined a gym and began swimming again. In fact, for the first time since I was a boy in the scouts, I did a mile swim. How cool is that for a middle-aged fathlete? Very cool, if you ask me. Or as my brother would say in high school, where we required to take Latin: frigadus infans. It’s supposed to be like David Byrne’s opening lyric to the Talking Heads hit 80’s song, “Burning Down the House” — “Cool, baby.” But literally it translates to “cold baby,” which is a lot less hip. Hey, Latin’s dead, right?
Anyway, that’s the summary of February. A lot of work, but it paid off in statistics. The numbers keep me honest and striving to beat or at least match yesterday. As more job opportunities arise, I may have to curtail exercising and even blogging a bit. But hopefully not too much. Having access to a gym should help me at least work on my swimming. I may join in some yoga and other classes, do High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) on stationary bikes, and possibly even some weights. The overall goal is to do my best — and forget the rest. And that’s about all any of us should expect of ourselves — and others.
How was your February biking, walking, swimming, or whatever activity you prefer?
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