#17: Why do I ride? Good question.

RidingToday a friend asked “Why do I ride? What drives me on?” And he asked me this because he has seen me go from nothing to 160km a week and keep on doing it.

So I ask myself “why do I ride?” because I wasn’t sure I knew the answer.

I don’t race (although I am considering it) so I am not training for anything.

I don’t have any events planned. I first pushed hard to achieve a virtual goal of two consecutive days of 100km. I road 100kms on the Spring cycle and another 100 on the Sydney to Gong ride but by that time, I had already learnt to ride the distance. Since then I tick off personal bests on Strava and continue to do some long rides to keep the skill level up.

I don’t have any big goals. I achieved 100km, 2 x 100km and a 25km/h average over a 100km ride and did these in 6 months. I have a desire to ride 160km which is a hundred mile ride (aka the century) and a 300km week but there is no time on either of them.

Roads

I have lost weight. I started off at 89kg, now I’m 78kg and I think I’d like to hit 72kg which is skinny enough to ride up hills but not too skinny so my face doesn’t look too drawn. I burn about 2,500kj (600 cal) per hour which over a four hour ride is around 10,000kJ (incidentally my suggested intake is 7,500kJ per day). So I can eat what I want because I know that the calories will be burnt but I do find myself checking the scales far too often. Losing weight is definitely a motivator and people are really noticing the difference but I am going to have to buy a lot more new clothes soon.

I do have some roads I would like to ride. On the south coast of Sydney there is a road called Macquarie Pass that starts with 4km with an average of 8% incline, then adds another 8km at 5%. Even if I actually don’t ride this road it would be good to have the skills to be able to do it. This road represents a target skill level that I have mentioned in previous posts and that is based around the fact that if you love hills, it can take you anywhere.

And that is it, in essence “anywhere” is why I ride. I have really enjoyed exploring Sydney on my bike and that is what gets me out there. Once I am on the road I just want to keep on going, even if it’s finding new places within 10kms of home. I really enjoy seeing the sites slowly instead of 80kph in a car, soaking up the sun (but sometimes too much), seeing the wildlife and trees, and getting gobsmacked by some awesome views.

North Head Sydney

The road, it takes you places – and for me, that’s anywhere and everywhere. Thanks for asking Matt.
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