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Celebrating 20 years of commuting by bike

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Celebrating 20 years of commuting by bike

Old 04-08-11, 09:05 AM
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MNBikeCommuter
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Celebrating 20 years of commuting by bike

April 3, 1991. A co-worker convinced me to bike to work. I biked a bit as a kid and was always active, so "why not?" 6.5 miles later, I could barely walk up the one flight of stairs to my desk. I vowed never to let myself deteriorate to that point again. Some stats since then:
  • 2429 commutes
  • 68,000 miles saved on the cars
  • 206 - most commutes in one year (20 miles round trip)
  • 13 miles - shortest round trip commute
  • 50 miles - longest round trip (my current, since '04)
  • -10F degrees - coldest commute (10 miles that morning) and probably never again
  • 104F degrees - warmest, with a dewpoint in the upper 70s. My muscles loved it.
  • 13 - number of locations biked to across 5 employers
  • 165 - most consecutive business days of commuting
  • '92 Cannondale T600 - primary bike, pushing 81k miles
  • '95 Cannondale H600 for winter months, pushing 17k miles
  • panniers - early '90s REI Novara. The left gave out after 56k miles, so I switched to the still new right, which is now also on its final stitches.

Jeff
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Old 04-08-11, 09:57 AM
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congrats...noob.
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Old 04-08-11, 10:17 AM
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scroca
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Very impressive. I want to be like you when I grow up.
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Old 04-08-11, 10:19 AM
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NICE WORK!

i'm only starting on year 4, but i certainly hope to make it to 20 years.
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Old 04-08-11, 10:43 AM
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Congratulations, that's great!

I hope I don't make it to 20 years because I hope to retire in 8 years 6 months. :-)
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Old 04-08-11, 10:45 AM
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Congrats! That's impressive.
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Old 04-08-11, 11:26 AM
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You've kept stats for 20 years? Now that's impressive! I'm on my 20th year of bike commuting too, unless you count riding to school, in which case it's over 30. Never thought to keep stats on it until 2008, though.
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Old 04-08-11, 11:34 AM
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I'm not sure if the dedication to riding or to keeping stats is more impressive, but either way, that's awesome.
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Old 04-08-11, 12:07 PM
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Congrats!


Rode to my first job at the A & P in February of 1971 and have ridden to pretty much every job since. Wish I'd kept accurate stats but I can guess that its a lot of miles, a lot of saved gas, a lot of bike tires, a lot of chains, cassettes (freewheels) and I'll bet I've worn out the butt of a thousand pair of jeans.

I wouldn't trade a minute of all those commutes- they've always been the best part of my day, even when the wind blows and the snow flies.

May you have many more years of happy commuting!
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Old 04-08-11, 12:29 PM
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Congrats! I started in Chicago in February of 1987 after seeing a guy go by on a bike while I was on the bus...miserable. He was smiling and it was about 5 degrees F. I got a bike that weekend and have been cycle-commuting ever since. It's been a constant source of growth and learning. Wouldn't change a thing. Except maybe having the winter gear then that I have now.
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Old 04-08-11, 01:03 PM
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you are the winner
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Originally Posted by yummygooey View Post
crabon/campy/rapha/roadie-bro.

next step is recumbent.




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Old 04-08-11, 01:27 PM
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I wish I could say I have been consistent as you, but while I have managed to commute by bike in eight different cities, starting in middle school, I've allowed myself to be lulled into the the car on way too many occasions since obtaining my drivers license. Well done!
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Old 04-08-11, 02:19 PM
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I salute you.
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Old 04-08-11, 03:23 PM
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Congrats...At the very least you should earn a patch when you hit 100K miles. Dont truck drivers get a "million mile club" patch when they hit a million?
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Old 04-08-11, 06:01 PM
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Wow! Congrats, that's quite a feat! I am a latecomer to bicycle commuting; I took up cycling as a form of physiotherapy after suffering a spinal fracture in 2006. I bought my first new bike in almost 20 years in 2008, and tentatively started riding around the neighborhood. I discovered this forum shortly afterward and have been slowly racking up the miles since. Over the past year I have commuted to work almost everyday, which included one of the worst winters this area has seen in many a moon. I hope to be able to claim my 20-year commuting badge before I retire, too!
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Old 04-08-11, 08:42 PM
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Awesome! Those Cannondale's are holding up nicely!!
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Old 04-08-11, 09:01 PM
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Way Cool! You really roll.

So much for my "Commuting for 5 Years" thread I was thinking of starting.
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Old 04-08-11, 09:04 PM
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Let's see a picture of your bike!
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Old 04-08-11, 10:03 PM
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Great role model. Every newbie commuter should read this thread.

Originally Posted by megalowmatt View Post
Let's see a picture of your bike!
Let's see a photo of your remaining pannier
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Old 04-08-11, 10:30 PM
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I'm always impressed with myself if I can remember where I left my wallet. Keeping twenty years worth of stats is just beyond my range. I'm not sure if that makes you impressive or sick. I am most intrigued that you started commuting at a time when most cyclists were quitting, at least in CA.
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Old 04-09-11, 09:33 AM
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Hey, thanks for the compliments! I guess I've been in the "real world" a bit too much, with the usual reaction being a headshake and "you're crazy."

Stats: I guess I come by those naturally. (After a grandfather's death, my mother found a notebook of various notes, including the annual measurement of the circumference of the trees in his yard. :-) About the time I started biking to work, I got a call out of the blue from Microsoft, wanting to know if I'd evaluate a free copy of Excel 3.0 to see if it could be useful in my department. I had no idea what Excel was but wasn't going to turn down the offer. So with Windows 3.0 (wow, after my years of DOS experience, I knew Windows would catch on!) and Excel, I needed some data to play with. And since I just happened to have some "fun" data... It was the highlight of most days to be able to enter the previous day's stats and watch numbers and graphs magically change. The spreadsheet is still in use, and probably one of the older spreadsheets in existence. :-)

One motivator for getting back to biking was observing the general health (or lack of it) of co-workers who'd been sitting at desks for years. That, coupled with a family history of heart disease, high cholesterol (before it became a public word), and stroke, and a tendency to put on weight without much effort, and my wife wanting daytime use of our only car on occasion, it fell nicely into place.

100k: That's actually been reached. :-) There's a Cannondale tandem in the stable with almost 11k miles in the past ten years, along with a Schwinn Varsity tank (38 lbs) I used for a couple thousand winter miles before going with the hybrid.

Pictures: I've got some on another computer I'll go dig up. :-)

Last edited by MNBikeCommuter; 04-09-11 at 12:15 PM. Reason: specify "family health history" and not personal
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Old 04-09-11, 10:30 AM
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damn, that is awesome dude. very motivating.
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