Saturday, June 17, 2006

I started out riding again about 18 months ago, after not doing much cycling for many years. When I say about 18 months ago, I can say with some certainty that my first ride of this cycling incarnation was 18.12km down the Merri Creek Trail on January 31, 2005.

Being an obsessive type, I keep a spreadsheet which keeps track of all my rides. I now have a detailed record of my recent cycling history which provides all sorts of interesting information that satisfies my craving for trivia. It may be common among the cycling fraternity to keep a training diary with this sort of detail, but on the other hand, I am willing to admit to being a little eccentric. Ah, my lovely numbers.

For example, I can tell at a glance that my average speed on the 56 rides I did last year was 21.15km/h, while this year I'm motoring along at 22.67km/h (a 7.1% increase, not to be sneezed at). I can see my all-time top speed (74.2km/h) and note that my average kilometres per week has risen from 50.62km to 107.86km. For the 59 rides I've done this year, my average outing is a trip of 43km in a shade under two hours. And there's two double centuries and three century rides in there too.

My previous attempts to do much riding tended to stall a bit, as I'd lose motivation. Keeping the averages up, gradually increasing my mileage and speed and achieving long term goals has made a big difference this time. The big goal for this year is 5,000km or 100km a week. It will be double last year's milage. Next year I'll be aiming for at least 8,000. The best thing is that my enjoyment is increasing to the same extent.

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