Racking up the Miles: Oct 2015

Thinking back to last year at this time, I remember stressing some about the miles I was getting.  To clarify a bit, I am not one of those who sets a goal for a year of a number of miles to hit, then come hell or high water I make it.  To me, miles mean exercise, and exercise means staying in shape.

Last year, as the fall hit, I was spending entirely too much time in Spokane training new hires. Since I was in a hotel, I was eating out, and when I eat out I enjoy my food and when I enjoy my food I don’t work out as much (especially when I don’t have a bike) and ,,,,

Yeah, I was a mess.  So this year, even though I am NOT away, I have a shorter bike commute, so I was worried about the total miles…

However, what I did NOT factor into my riding was my wife Michelle.


She knows I worry about things like this. And she knows I hate that I make her a cycling widow in the summer.  Given this, I am likely to put off longer rides to hang out with her.  She loves the hang out time, but she has “NONE of that” when it comes to me skipping rides.  All month, since its our last few weeks of Daylight savings, she has been making sure that I get out on after work ride.

Editors note:  A small part of this is self preservation on her part. She has to put up with me whining about getting fat when I don’t ride soooo…..

The after work rides weren’t anything to write home about (though there was a blog post or two about them.) but they were outside, the air was fresh, the weather dry and for a few hours I could forget work.

The rides were between 30 and 40 miles, and took me to Seattle along the Interurban Trail to Seattle and then back along the Burke Gilman.  Even though it was fall, and I had to race the darkness home, there’s just no beating the scenery around here.

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As I have always said, taking the time, on any ride, to stop and take a picture or 3 just makes the ride more memorable, enjoyable  and easy to share.  I have found when I don’t stop, I end up regretting it almost every time.  So now, even though I am NOT 100% successful, I do my best to make sure I pack along the real camera instead of just the phone.  The phone does ok, but as you can see here, as seen last week from my work window, the real camera does MUCH better.


This month was special for 3 other things, the most important of which had nothing to do with a bike!

Early this month, Michelle and I  met Abby, our niece, in person for the first time.  She braved some of the worst Seattle weather ever to come visit us from Texas.


She says the monsoon rains and wind will NOT keep her from visiting again but we will see!

Next, a milestone was reached for the bike.


21000 miles since the start of my riding in January of 2008, I have always been a numbers geek, so milestones like this make me excited, even though the rest of the world might find it boring….

Finally, I took my first bike maintenance course and learned to service the disc brakes on my bike,

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I took them apart, checked the brake pads and, most importantly, put them back together well enough to have my bike stop on the ride to work the next day! I am hoping to take more classes in the near future and who knows, maybe someday I will be able to do a complete tune up.

With all this, and a couple of indoor rides on the rollers due to rain,


I wasn’t sure how many miles I had total.  I was pleasantly surprised to find out that  I had racked up 356 miles this month, almost 100 more than August and 200 more than last October!  Michelle is doing a great job making sure my butt gets out there!

One additional thing. as I said above,  I don’t set a mileage goal at the beginning of the year.  HOWEVER, always remember I am a numbers geek.  I did some quick math and I am within serious spittin distance (367 miles) of a 4000 mile year.  This would be a new record for me.  That is only 188.5 miles a month for the last two months!! That is a challenge I can reach!  So I am sharing it to help spur me on!

It will mean more shed rides, but those combined with some longer rides on the weekends, as well as my bike commute,  and I think I can do it!

Wish me luck!


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