Friday, April 20, 2007


What a perfect day to wrap up another 5-day bike commute week! Overall, this week has been nothing short of stellar for cycling, despite being a little chilly a few mornings.

I am still on course to beat my cycling goal of riding 300 miles this month. I have about 70 miles left to go, and 10 days to sneak them in, including two more monday night recovery rides. If you have been keeping an eye on my log book, you'll know that Mondays often add between 30 and 40 miles each. One thing is for sure: it's paying off. I feel better and stronger than ever this month, and I might actually lose a few pounds.

I'll need to come up with a May goal for myself soon. Without enrolling in some distance rides, I don't think I have the time in a month to crank it up to 400 watts miles. I may need to do some number crunching, but I think I might go back to nursing my commute/drive ratio back to life, or work on bumping my average speed up.

It's worth noting that as I sit here writing this at Starbucks in City Center Square, I've noticed at least 3 other bike commuters, and I may have missed a few bikes on passing buses. I can only hope next week stays nice like this, if not a bit warmer.


MRMacrum said...

For several years back in the 80s and 90s, I sat down every Jan. and outlined my monthly mileage goals for the year. Tracked the mileages, the averages, got right into it. All because I wanted to be a fater racer, on road and off. The 4th season, I stopped. It stopped being fun. I just rode and raced and paid no attention to the stats. Did not seem to affect my performance one way or the other.

But I can relate to your interest in keepting tabs. Each goal realized and passed just feeds the fire and keeps interest and focus.

Noah said...

Thanks for the comments. Indeed, I'm bike commuting primarily because it's fun, and it'd be a ridiculous show of futility for me to do it for any other reason, as there are more efficient ways to get in shape, save the environment, or many other reasons that people list for why they bike to work.

Sure, every bit helps. And about those who can't afford, don't wish to own, or cannot legally drive a car, those are a different and heartier breed than I. They're in it for the long haul, fun or not. Personally, when I stop liking it, I'll stop doing it.

Making silly graphs, spreadsheets, and doing stats on data is also something I enjoy doing, and who doesn't feel great after they conquer a goal? I like being able to sit down and play with the numbers, too.

Much like you said, my goals are something to keep me excited and interested, and to give me something to feel good about. After the first three months or so, the nuance of "I just rode to work!" kind of wore off.

Jett said...

I'm an IT guy like you and enjoy playing with the numbers. I'm interested to know what you use for your log book.

As far as goals, I only pick goals that are fun so it's almost automatic that I'll stick with it. Having the numbers to graph and analyze is just part of the fun for me. The fact that you record data to measure progress isn't "work" for me, so it all comes together nicely.

As an example, I've composted for years, but it wasn't until I started measuring the temperature generated inside the pile that I started to really have fun with it. You're able to tell what works and what doesn't work when you measure.

Noah said...

FYI Jett, you can see my cycling log (Google Spreadsheets) in the mess of links to the right. It's under "Clubs and Sites"

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