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Old 09-16-05, 02:47 PM   #1
Digital Gee
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What to do about boredom?

Maybe you folks have some ideas. I live in an urban environment in a fantastic city for cycling (at least weather-wise). I can start riding right out my front door and often do. From there I have two terrific destinations which aren't that far away (most of my during-the-week rides are 10-15 miles) -- Balboa Park and Kensington, if you're familiar with San Diego.

Of course, i can also fairly quickly bring the bike to some other areas using my car.

But here's the rub. I've done all the rides in my neck of the woods and the necks nearby many times now. Sure, they're great destinations, but it feels like I've explored almost every nook and cranny. Yes, each ride is unique because it's a different day, different wind, different temperature, different time, and so on, but I think you know what i mean -- when I start thinking about where I'll ride today, I have the same reaction I have when i start thinking about what to have for dinner today -- oh no, not that again! Isn't there something different????

So, who's got some tips I can use to push through the "boredom" barrier?
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Old 09-16-05, 02:57 PM   #2
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Easy enough... get lost.

Seriously. Go out and explore neighborhoods that you have never been to before. I mean really explore; you are not going to do a fast ride, but a block by block ride. Then get lost and try to find your way back home again. Usually takes riding in a long direction until you come to a familiar street. If you know the area well enough to find something familiar quickly, then you need to go further. Wife and I do this from time to time... it is not a fast ride, but you find areas that you never really knew existed, and you have a good time.

Leave the car at home and see how long it takes to get to some destinations you have driven to before.
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Old 09-16-05, 03:02 PM   #3
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Gary,

I do not know how you ride but if you are one that pushes himself on most rides, then slow way down and enjoy the scenary. This has worked for me on many occassions. A 10 mile ride may take an hour or more. Stop and smell the roses. Look at the smaller things and not the big ones.

IF you mostly ride slow, then go hammer a little that should break you out of your funk.

Try to enjoy the ability that you have today. Tomorrow it may be gone. Just as your sign off says "Cycling is 50% physical and 90% mental" it is the mental thing.
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Old 09-16-05, 03:54 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Digital Gee
So, who's got some tips I can use to push through the "boredom" barrier?
See if you can hit 45 down Texas? Take a shortcut through the barrio?

I'm Mr. Boring, so maybe not a great expert on "what to do", but oh well ...

What kinds of things are you interested in? Have you been to the South Bay yet? Chula Vista/East Lake/Bonita has bike lanes, parks, and coffee shops everywhere. Including some parkettes that may not be on the map. You can go down the Pacific Highway/Harbor drive or hop the ferry and bike the silver strand, stopping off to wade in the ocean. You can bike along the bay and visit the nature center. Visit the marina and walk out on the mini-piers Some people fish there (don't know if its legal). The second weekend of the month you can bike to Rohr park to watch the kids ride the "steam" railroad (like the kind they don't do anymore in Balboa), stopping off first at Donny's for coffee right next to Peformance Bike. Or bike up San Miguel road (passing a Starbucks) to Summit park (I think if you ask they'll let you ride around and look at the horses). There's also the Olympic training center (might need to call ahead). Or visit any one of our four fine WalMarts, which is what I usually do.

I'm not a mega-athlete, so I need incentive to keep me going. I try to arrange my outings so that I have at least one practical objective: Bread from Henry's, fertilizer from Home Depot, camping equipment from WalMarts, DVDs or videos from the library, or a few minutes solitude in a park no one else knows is there (like the Bonita Optimist "Fort").

Have fun!
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Old 09-16-05, 05:03 PM   #5
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Gary, check out www.efgh.com/bike it will give you every bike route, lane in San Diego and some pictures too, to get you inspired. I know with the price of gas over $3.00 gal. it's hard to justify loading up the bike to go 50 miles just to do a 25 or 30 mile ride, but when you find it so enjoyable the gas price won't seem so bad. It could be worse, you could have a real expensive hobby.
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Old 09-16-05, 05:14 PM   #6
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To: Bored in San Diego

I've lived here since '68. I've m/c'd over nearly every road in the county and bicycled many as well.... many times over. I've never been bored. I couldn't be in a better place.

For excercise I do a particular loop that includes Morena Blvd, Mission Bay, Sea World Dr. and Fiesta Island. Today was my 99th time around that loop in the past 14 months. I still love the ride! I use to do a lot of riding in the late '70s here. I still enjoy it as much today as I did then.

Here's a thought, look for the steepest hills and grades you can find. Challenge yourself to riding up them. Here are some suggestions: Hill St. in OB, Texas St., Laurel St., Bachman Pl., Jaun St. in Old Town, Presidio in Old Town, Goshen St off Friars, Milton and Ticonderoga off Morena.

Those ought to keep you busy for awhile especially if you ride from your home to each of them and back.

Oh, don't forget the North side of Soledad Mt. from La Jolla.

Good luck!
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Old 09-16-05, 08:07 PM   #7
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Find a riding partner(s) if haven't done so already. I have a sport-tourer that I've fixed up with moustache bars and 700-35's. Fun to take the bike to the coast (or somewhere else) where I can ride around, see the sights, etc.....the point being to mix a fun place/other activities with riding...riding being more of a supportive thing for the day. Its a different style of biking, but biking nonetheless, broadens the horizons and adds some new associations to the bike. Sort of gets rid of that death-grip on the bars mentality.

Kind of like dressing up your wife in a blond wig and rediscovering each other! 8-)
[Actually, I'm not married, but a friend says it does wonders.)
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Old 09-16-05, 08:15 PM   #8
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Bring your bike onto a northbound Coaster (www.gonctd.com), explore a new area, such as Oceanside (e.g. San Luis Rey river bike path), Carlsbad, or Encinitas, and then either bike or ride the train back home.
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Old 09-16-05, 08:34 PM   #9
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Wow. I'm overwhelmed! You have given me so many good ideas, I can't wait to get started. It's just what I needed -- a shake and a good brainstorm! And this afternoon, as I (once again) did a ride I've done a bunch of times from my front door, discovered that THE MINUTE I start pedalling, the so-called boredom disappears.

It appears to be all in the set up.

Oh, and having someone cut me off with a right turn into a diagonal parking space helped clear some cobwebs, too! LOL

Thanks everyone!
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Old 09-16-05, 09:48 PM   #10
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Also, simply reversing my route helped
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Old 09-17-05, 05:38 AM   #11
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formula4 just beat me to it but the ride looks totally different when reversed
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Old 09-17-05, 07:45 AM   #12
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I agree with Dnvr about bringing a camera. Sometimes I'll pick a theme (let's say interesting shop windows) and suddenly my ride takes on an entirely new and interesting complexion.

Also, I don't know a thing about this club, but it does offer social rides as well as faster. It may take a little emotional oomf to check out a club, but riding with others can be rewarding and you'll find some new routes as well. http://fishcicle.com/wheelmen/
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Old 09-17-05, 09:02 AM   #13
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Let me tell you what NOT to do about boredom.

A few months ago, riding was getting stale for me, too. Same routes weekly or daily for 11 years. So I started added some running into my workouts. I guess it's important to note that around 15 years ago, an orthopedic surgeon told me I shouldn't run, and that's why I switched from running to riding. So back in June, I'm running gassers, then walking back to meet my wife (my riding partner), catching her, running some more gassers, and so on.

Long story short, I had arthroscopic surgery thursday for a knee injury I sustained doing that. The MRI had said I had a loose piece of cartilage in my (right) knee, about 6mm long. The surgeon said it was actually about 15mm long, and 15mm wide. I have a hole about that size on the back of my kneecap. He said the rest of the knee looked like a 20 something year old (I'm 51). Don't even think about running. Don't try using stairs for about 3 months.

So today I'm re-habbing and wishing I was out riding the same old routes. On the plus side, it's amazing how fast these things heal. I think I should be back on the bike in a week or so. The therapist I saw yesterday said a month, but they don't know me. Heck, I rode 10 miles the night before the surgery.


Bob

Last edited by BobL; 09-17-05 at 09:34 AM.
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Old 09-17-05, 10:52 AM   #14
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San Diego is a biker's paradise--even better than my own area. It's a personality thing, I suspect--I have a few routes I do, over and over again, and never get bored (though I'm still a noob compared to many of you). I'll see how well I can handle hill x, or whether I can pick my speed up on stretch y. Or whether I can pass someone--Anyone!! And there's no shortage of fit female joggers and cyclists to admire and smile at. Aahh.
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Old 09-17-05, 03:59 PM   #15
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If you have a bike computer, compete against yourself. Try to improve your times or average speed on certain routes. Work on hill climbing. Take on a hill, coast back down and do it again and again until you use a higher gear or get to the top faster or improve your speed uphill or whatever. The bike computer is an excellent tool to keep you entertained while riding. If you don't have one, then get one. They aren't expensive and they work quite well.
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Old 09-17-05, 04:08 PM   #16
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[Edited and moved with a couple of more suggestions.]

Take a camera and make yourself an album - not of biking, but of interesting things along the way.

Interesting houses

Wildflower

Gardens

People

Take your time, and use the bike for another purpose than biking.

Take a trail or street that you haven't a clue where it goes.

Go to Cuyamaca or Julian or Pine Hills. Ride the campgrounds.

Go to the top of Mt. Palomar and come down the grade just as fast as you can. Your wife can follow and pray you don't go off the edge (or perhaps that you do).

Ride the Burlingame neighborhood - now gentrified since I lived there in the 50's.

Go through Hillcrest and "see the sights."

Ride the coast trail from Oceanside to Torrey Pines and up the old Torrey Pines grade - that will get your blood flowing! Continue into La Jolla.

Go out in the desert and ride Borrego or Ocotillo Wells.

Go the back road from Manzanita to Borrego - that will wake you up!

Ride Santa Ysabel and get some great bread from Dudley's (I used to work with the daughter of the owner).

My wife and I love to ride Pine Valley. When we travel to San Diego with our bikes, we always stop in Pine Valley and ride the residential roads on the north side of the valley. At one time, about 1953, my family and I lived one summer in the old firehouse right on US 80, which then went directly through PV. Huge semi's coming right through the bedroom, or so it seemed. There was no I-8. My dad was a summer USFS ranger, and I got paid to help him. There was one volunteer fire truck for the whole area.

Enough?
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Old 09-18-05, 09:09 AM   #17
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I guess I am lucky, I am one of those people who can do the same thing everyday and not be bored, wait a minute, I do ride the same 15 mile route everyday except tues & thurs when I ride with the bike club. I live in a rural area and I have to pick my route for safety first which is why I ride the same route daily but riding the same route has benefits, I can compare my speed and see how I am improving. I wish I lived in some of the scenic place many of you live in and had more choices in where I ride near my home.
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Old 09-18-05, 11:31 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Digital Gee
Maybe you folks have some ideas. I live in an urban environment in a fantastic city for cycling (at least weather-wise). I can start riding right out my front door and often do....
So, who's got some tips I can use to push through the "boredom" barrier?
get a longboard, 3/2 fullsuit and go flounder for a while at La Jolla Shores/Scripts pier or Tamourlane (sp?). The winter waves are barely a month or so away. Sides, SD is just fine form summer type southern swells anyway. The water's still comfy warm; and you have some great longboard spots down there!.
Watching the sunrise come over the hills, while sitting in the lineup, is something not to be missed.

Winter in the mountains is also a great time for us (So Cal types). The 1st cold snaps means the fly annoyance factor drops way down. I'll just get on my old MTB clunker and cruise some easy fireroads in the backcountry. Great climbing practice, no real goals of 'time', speed or any such thing.
This past winter I used the clunker for a couple rain rides (before my 'in the hospital bed' mishap). This year I'm planning to go out for a ride on every rainy day.
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Old 09-20-05, 12:58 AM   #19
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Sounds obvious but have you ever thought of riding your 'established' rides the other way around? (established rides as in 50 miles plus rides)
Done it a few times and, surprisingly, it opened a whole new world to me. It might do the trick for you aswell.
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