Tonight’s ride was a modest 10 miles, but it pushed me over 3,000. Round numbers make nice milestones — in my case, literally. Normally I do statistics at the beginning of a new month for the one proceeding. But this marker seemed worthy of a post. For one thing, it is a number that tells me I will have probably ridden my bike more than driven the car I was given in the last year. There’s something to be said for doing what one can to reduce one’s carbon footprint, given the very real and scientific consensus that climate change is killing the planet. (Naysayers can go put on their tin foil hats elsewhere like with the flat earthers.) Of course 15+ years with no car was better. But I digress. I may be slowing but I still manage to ride my bike. If you also bike, you know it’s fun. If you don’t, you should try it! Do you konw what’s also fun? Looking at my biking numbers.
It’s not all numbers, there are pictures, too, see? Like the one that says I’m 1,175 miles ahead of schedule. But that’s based on a pretty low goal. I made that after my most epic year 6,666.66 miles in 2020. Of course, I biked every day, but it still wasn’t easy. I figured I deserved a break and would do only 3,333.34. But so far, I just cain’t quit you, bicyclin’! But as I keep saying, any ride can be your last, so you never know if you’ll meet your goal or not.
Despite my diminished or fluctuating energy levels, I keep going because I’m still a fathlete and need to lose or at least maintain my weight. Various stressors recently have led to some stress eating and thus some weight gain lately, unfortunately. That and giving up on MyFitnessPal, the fascistic food tracker. I can blame the nutritionist for the latter, saying I could quit, but I do still measure most things that go down my gullet. The takeaway would be that I go slowly, but I still go. If I didn’t, I’m sure I’d feel worse.
But as you can tell, 121 miles a week average ain’t too shabby. I also passed 75,000 feet in elevation, although I stringently avoid as many big hills as possible. Austin, Texas, has a lot of them towards the west, where the Balcones Escarpment begins. So I just don’t go there — literally. Even when I had Sookie the Fuji Silhouette, I only ventured that way when I was training for charity rides, or when I was in shape enough to do them without hurting too, bad. And still there are many really big hills I literally cannot climb at all.
But that’s OK. I’m going for distance, not for speed or elevation. Those are a younger man’s (or woman’s) game, like Lawson Craddock, about whom I wrote in my last post. Strava told me he did his first training ride in Japan after arriving for the Olympics. As for me, 3,002 miles in 200 days works out to be 15.01 miles a day. At this rate I’ll hit 5,478.65 miles for the year, my second best after 2020’s “Devil of a Year” or what I like to call El Diablo Doble — The Double Devil — for the mileage I made.
You’ll also note in the My Stats chart my All-Time mileage. That’s just since I began using Strava on January 1, 2016. I’m 629.9 miles away from 30,000 miles total. Now that’s a nice big round milestone number — 10 times what I just completed in six and a half months. Of course it doesn’t count the approximate 3,000 I rode in 2015 and the average guess of 1,000 a year from 2005-2014. And the year’s not over. The total from 2005-21 should amount to over 45,000, or 7.25 miles a day, way back when I wasn’t even trying or counting.
I still don’t know what it all means. I’ll keep going until I have to stop. And I suppose that’s basically all what any of us can do during these pandemic times. Just keep pedaling!
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