I want to preface this by pointing out I am not a fitness nut.
A short while ago I realized part of my daily frustrations was how much I was driving everyday. I had been a pedestrian and casual bicyclist for the last 15 years, give or take, but family emergencies required that I begin driving again.
I really hate driving as it turns out.
This came as somewhat of a shock as my memories of the activity from when I was a teenager seem quite fun.
I like what driving allows me to accomplish but, I do not like traffic, traffic lights, other drivers, and bumper stickers. When I am driving I do not like pedestrians or bicyclists. In short being behind the wheel of a car fills me with anger. Most of all I do not like what it costs me to drive a car. Fuel, insurance, licensing, registration. Plus it is just a whole lot of sitting down and feeling my butt get wider. For these and many other reasons I decide that I was going to dust off the bicycle and begin riding it on my commute to work.
It was going well for the first week I managed to use the bike four of my five shifts and was feeling pretty good about it. Then a coworker asked the innocent questions of how far of a trip it was and how long it took. I had to Google Maps it. According to them it is 4.1 miles and should take approximately 25 minutes by bike. I could tell that it was taking me longer than that to travel, and I knew I wasn’t always using the exact route Google recommended. So I dialed me up a fitness tracker on my phone and began mapping out my routes.
On October 6th my daily commute became exercise as well. Through the app that I am using I began to keep track of not just distance and speed, but elevation climbed, calories burned, how often I ride, and for how long. I started planing my routes to take get a good mix of flat land and hills to climb. I started tacking on extra miles if I found myself running early for work. Most recently my wife and I have decided to make a point of the two of us going on one non-commute long ride a week. Which is an awesome excuse to spend more time with her.
I have noticed since I started riding my bike this often I seem to have more energy in general, I have a much larger appetite, and I am sleeping better. I also feel much better about myself and am making better choices about what I eat almost subconsciously.
I am still not a fitness nut, I am however becoming very interested in maintaining my health.To this end I am keeping track of my activities and learning better ways of taking care of myself.
In the month of October I biked 161.9 miles at an average pace of 6 minutes and 9 seconds per mile. I climbed a total of 1,874 feet in elevation during the course of 35 rides, with a combined duration of 16 hours 35 minutes and 56 seconds. I burned 7,195 calories.
I really don’t know what to make of all these numbers but the fitness tracker app seems to think they have some bearing on my life so I plan to look into it. Based on what I can get my head wrapped around at this point I am setting what seems to be the reasonable goals of increasing my miles in November to 180 miles for the month and bringing my average speed down to a flat 6 minutes.
I’ll be touching on this subject from time to time to compare notes with you all if you like.
Do you folks do much in the way of exercise? what kind? Any advice for a beginner? Let me know in your comments.