I’ve had the new bike for a little less than three months, and thanks to modern technology I know that I’ve now pushed it along for one thousand miles. I’ve compiled a list of things I’ve (re-)learned during all those miles in the saddle. Some of them might even be mildly interesting.
- When approaching a stop, think about what gear you want to be in when you start again. Once you’re not moving it’s too late to change.
- The last ten feet of a climb can kill your momentum just as quickly as the first ten. Don’t let up your effort when you’re “almost there”.
- Around here at least, if you demonstrate that you’re fully prepared to stop at the 4-way, most motorists will wave you through.
- There’s something about BMW drivers, and it’s not something good.
- Songs that match your pedaling cadence can get really stuck in your head.
- Fatigue + excited little dog + speed bump = road rash
- Combining the previous two: If you’re riding for an hour, and you have the “stuck on Band-Aids” jingle stuck in your head, there’s nothing to do but pray for the salvation of an ice cream truck playing ‘Little Brown Jug’
- On flat terrain, 14 miles per hour isn’t measurably harder than 13, after the first few pumps. Knock it up a gear!
- I’m getting callouses on my palms.
- Go ahead, we’ll wait. Done? Good.
- The two worst things: headwinds and garbage trucks. It is likely that at some point I will go on at length about these scourges.
- On the way to work, I have the sun at my back and (usually) the wind in my face. On the way home, I have the sun at my back and (usually)… the wind in my face. I call shenanigans!
- Tomorrow marks two months since I put gas in my car. I have biked to work rather than drive 47 times this summer. By the time you read this, it will probably be 48.
- I’m lobbying for Apple to relocate its headquarters to Australia for the winter. Already not looking forward to short days and dark rides.
- Biggest snub from a member of the Spandex Crowd: outside my building, by a guy who works at my company. Ignored me completely. I didn’t think we were allowed to hire jerks here.
- While riding, I’ve been composing the BOMB manifesto. It was “Bearded Overweight Men on Bikes, but I think I’m changing it to Bearded Older Men on Bikes, because I might not always be the former, but there’s not much one can do about the latter. We will be a legion based on the ideals of Courtesy, Friendliness, and Brotherhood. We Are BOMB!
- I get a lot of stupid ideas while riding.
- I’ve lost about twelve pounds, but I suspect several pounds more of fat. My legs are still skinny, but there’s definitely more muscle on them now.
- By next summer, I might be ready for that Kilimanjaro trip Buggy invited me on fifteen years ago.
- Mondays aren’t so bad when you have a good ride on rested legs.
One thousand miles! Holy crap! I suspect the next thousand will go more quickly; my stamina is greatly improved. 150 miles in a week is no longer as crazy as it once seemed. Today I actually began to wonder how many miles I could expect on my tires before they were worn out. That’s not something I’ve had to worry about before.
As the novelty wears off, I might not write so many episodes about bicycling, but then again that’s when I have time to think about blog episodes. So, sorry in advance.