I need a destination

Mark Vande Kamp and I were out for a ride last night and had a conversation which gelled some of my recent thoughts.

I can really only motivate myself to ride when I have a destination in mind. For me this really boils down to two types of riding. Commuting and touring.

In 10+ years I’ve never been much of one for just getting on my bike and riding 20/50/100 miles and ending up at home again, especially if I’ve done the ride before and I’m just riding solo. I don’t really feel like I’ve acheived anything but fitness, and cycling is about more than fitness for me. When I think back on my “just go out for a ride” type rides the enjoyable ones either all had a purpose or were more social events than riding.

Commutes I can do solo. The long form of my commute is 25 miles and I ride it a couple of times a week in the spring and summer. There are two routes to take and both are enjoyable for different reasons. The medium length commute is 10 miles and I do that on my other days. This makes it trivial to rack up 80-100 miles of riding every week during the summer. I also use the term commute lightly, commutes include any riding where I’m riding from one point to another. Riding to have dinner with friends? Riding to the grocery store? Both are in the rough “commute” area for me.

This year I’m making a big push back towards touring. I kicked it off with a overnight ride with the point83 club a few weeks ago. I hope to do one overnighter per month through the summer. In July I have a week long trip planned with Larry and John (my normal touring buddies — Larry and I have been doing week long tours for almost a decade). Touring is the ideal pleasure ride — I have a destination, there are no repeats, and the tours often involve riding with a friend or two.

This weekend I have two destination rides planned. Tonight I’m riding to a friend’s cobb pizza oven party. Sunday I’m going on Ro’s cargo bike ride to have a memorial day picnic in West Seattle.

One Comment

  1. Richard says:

    I too find I often need a destination. It doesn”t matter were, the errand could be trivial or useless. The idea of riding around in circles solo doesn”t appeal to me. To encourage weekend rides I”m planning to make a list of places I”d like to go, and then figure out how to get there by bike.