Bike month is upon us, and she welcomed us with open arms, harsh winds, and rain. I am beyond stoked, and my goals are listed below. If you see me in a car, even if you’re driving that car, slap me across the face. First though, Des Moines has a local commuter challenge where individuals and corporations can compete against each other. My company usually has dismal turnout, but I’ve been pushing hard this year and recruiting as many people as I can. I even suffered through the most painful editor experience known to man (corporate America, amirite?) to bring the employees an intranet blog post. One difference this year from last year is that all trips must effectively be a trip you would normally take in a car but take by bike instead. If it’s your ride to work, it’s a “commute”. If it’s a ride to the grocery store, it’s a “transportation” ride. If it’s a Trans Iowa race, it doesn’t count. As the month unfolds, I’ll have a few more blog posts about some of the events around town, so stay tuned for those.
Here are my goals this month:
1. Ride my bike somewhere every day. This one is going to be easy except for right at the end of the month. I’ll be driving to Michigan for a wedding from 5/25 to 5/29, but I plan on strapping my rack to our rental car and bringing it up with us. I was going to try to think of an errand to run every day I don’t commute to work, but I don’t know that I’ll have a ton of errands in Michigan so I may have to open it up to recreational rides – which I, unfortunately, can’t log in the aforementioned challenge.
2. Hit 400 miles. I don’t actually know how achievable this is since I’ve basically never tracked miles. I’m going to get 220 miles from commuting to work. If I throw in a few trips to Altoona for soccer or to visit the fam, I can get almost 40 miles round trip on those rides. Ideally, these will all be transportation trips.
3. (Aside from Michigan) Ride more miles by bike than I ride in a car. Obviously I have to throw the Michigan trip out of this stat since that’ll be over 1,000 miles, and I don’t have the legs for that. Aside from that, though, I think this is pretty achievable and might be something that I’m already doing today. At 55 miles per week by bike and only driving my car once a week on weekends, I might already have this on lock.
4. Lead my company in miles. This one is largely dependent on how many people from my office participate and which ones. Last year, one of the guys rode to New Orleans so that was pretty unbeatable (we could log recreational trips last year). There’s one guy that has an 18.4 mile round trip, so if he rides every day I’ll have to surpass my 400 miles goal to beat him, and they’ll have to be transportation trips so that I can log them.
At the end of the month, I’ll go into the dirty details on how it went. Regardless of what your bike month goals are, I encourage everyone to get out on a bike at least once and have some fun! Getting from point A to point B doesn’t have to be spent in a metal box, and cycling is a great, low impact way to get some cardio and remember what it’s like to be a kid again. Catch you out there!