When I received a bike computer for Christmas in 2005 my goal was to ride 1,000 miles in a year. It sounded like a nice round number and not something too difficult to achieve, especially as I was only planning on riding three to four times a week and had booked a month off to go to Australia in March/April.
It turned out to be a rather prescient number, because I ended up taking more time off in August, due to a nasty case of conjunctivitis, and my riding was rather patchy throughout September and October because I was terribly de-motivated at work and couldn’t be much bothered with the bike thing.
On October 11 my log book shows that I had reached a grand total of 980 miles. So close, and yet so far. Because, as most of you know, a week later I started feeling ill and then, while on a trip to Venice, Italy, I developed a nasty chest infection that was later diagnosed as pneumonia. I did not ride my bike again for the rest of 2006!
This week, my first time back on the bike since illness, I passed the 1,000 mile mark. I gave a silent cheer as I rounded Parliament Square with one eye on the traffic and another eye on the bike computer to see that magic number appear on the screen, albeit four days too late!
This year I don’t have any specific goals other than to ride my bike more often, although it would be entirely possible for me to notch up 2,000 miles if I really put my mind to it. It would mean riding a minimum of four times a week every week of the year, which isn’t entirely impossible — unless I go away on holiday or, god forbid, I get ill again.
I would very much like to do some more recreational cycling — for example, cycling that doesn’t involve commuting into work — which would help boost the numbers.
I’m not making any promises, but let’s see what happens. It could be an interesting year!