Might as well make it official: Going for 2 years.
On the very first day of 2015 I was rolling with several hundred other cyclists on the Orange Cycle New Year’s Day ride. As I rode along, I felt especially relaxed, happy and satisfied: I’d successfully accomplished all of my 2014 cycling goals! Of my 2014 cycling goals, the toughest of the bunch was my goal of riding every single day. The minimum number of miles I had to ride for a day to count towards my “ride every day” challenge was 16 kilometers/10 miles, but my actual daily average was 55.2 kilometers/34.3 miles per day.
Anyway, as I rolled along on that beautiful New Year morning, I told my friend Hector that it was going to be tough for me to break the streak. Hector said I should get it over with quick, just like ripping off a Band-Aid, and not ride the following day. That made a lot of sense, and I strongly considered it.
But when I woke up the next day, I really wanted to ride. So, I rode.
And I rode the next day, and the day after that, and the day after that. Before I knew it January was behind me, February came and went in a flash and March was a memory.
The last day I didn’t ride my bike was all the way back in 2013. December 30th, to be exact. That puts my riding streak at 462 days, and over those 462 days I’ve ridden 25,201 kilometers (15,659 miles).
I thought about the times I forced myself to ride even when I didn’t feel like it, and how I was almost always glad that I did. I thought about how this challenge has forced me to do something that takes dedication, commitment and going outside my comfort zone. I thought about how young riding makes me feel. I thought about all the cool things I’ve seen from my saddle, and all the awesome experiences I’ve had on my bike. I thought about the great people I’ve met because of cycling. I thought about that killer post-ride glow that almost always follows a good ride…
All of those things were bouncing around in my head as I contemplated my decision, but what stood out the most was this: I love riding my bike. That’s it. Simple as that. If anything, my love affair with cycling has grown stronger over the past year.
I’m going to go for a second year. That’s 731 days in a row, starting December 31, 2013.
Oh, I hear your gears turning. I’ll go ahead and address it right now. If I go for two years, why not make it an even 1,000 days? Of course if I ride 1,000 days straight, how could I not go ahead and do 3 full years?
When climbing, a great technique to help make the climb more manageable is to divide the ascent into reasonably sized chunks and focus on each section. I’m not dodging the question, I’m climbing.