Originally Posted by natebrr
When I started out I had set a goal of trying to get in at least 30 - 40 miles a week. Do to a lack of the correct gear (clothing, right size saddle), and a lack of motivation I have not made it out of the teens for a single week.
Well I am finally headed in the right direction. I have made 2 ten mile rides to start the week, and I am feeling good. Thanks again for all the motivation, everyone.
OK, here's some motivation, a blog posting I made nearly a year ago. This was on one of my first rides outside. I'd only learned to ride a bike two months before. Six months later I'd ride a century:
March 13, 2007: 6.31 miles, 48 minutes. Yes, this is not only a slight increase in mileage, but I shaved ten minutes off my time from yesterday. Heck, that's not a shave, but a slice!
Today I rode on both the Schuylkill (pronounced SKOOL-kill) Trail and the Audubon Loop. The Audubon Loop is an offshoot of the ST that connects to the John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove, adding a 5 mile side loop to the trail. The ST runs from center city Philadelphia to Oaks, a distance of about 30 some miles. At Oaks, the ST connects to the Perkiomen (pronounced per-KEE-oh-men) Trail, which runs to Pottstown, and eventually will reach Reading, PA, far off in Berks County.
The reason for the 'split ride' was that I had to return a jersey to a bike shop - not my local bike shop, but one I received a gift card for - and wanted to get there before they closed. So my ST ride was a bit over a half our, and 4.67 miles. The first part of the ride was to set a time trial result for the B7 contest at the Fat Cyclist forum. I left from the Betzwood Picnic area in Valley Forge Park. Having completed three miles in 19:37, I pedaled a little bit more before heading off to the shop.
Red was the color scheme I worked with at the shop - I got a red jersey, red socks, and red fingerless and padded gloves. My bike shoes are red and black. I was advised by the salesman not to ride past any bulls.
Once done and on the road home, I thought, "It's still daylight. What would the bike bloggers I read do?" I knew the answer, and because I was close to Audubon, I turned the Neilmobile around and drove to the Pawlings Road trailhead for the Audubon Loop and ST.
The day had been calm and sunny, but as the afternoon went on it became breezier. Audubon is hilly, and the Loop was a tougher climb than I expected. Also, the entrance required me to ride over a bridge spanning the 422 Expressway, and while there was a bike path, it was narrower than the Loop itself. If those aren't enough excuses, let me add that I was still tired from the previous day. So my planned attempt to ride all five miles dwindled to "lets make the total mileage for the day greater than yesterday." I will ride the entire Audubon Loop soon, but not today.
I wonder, however, if I should have tried to complete the Loop anyway. I am cautious by nature, but sometimes my caution gets in the way. Prudence is a wonderful virtue, but it can be confused with cowardice. I note that I was once again wearing jeans over my bike shorts. Was I wearing them because I was afraid of falling and hurting myself? Because my legs would be cold without covering? Or because I was afraid to be seen wearing lycra and thus being viewed as a 'serious' cyclist? I've spent four decades learning to see myself as a fat man; I hope it won't take four decades to accept myself as something else.