It’s the last day of the year, so after today’s ride I took a look at my cycling stats from the past year. Here’s my year by the numbers…
I did 159 rides totaling 5,001 miles*. That’s about the distance from New York to LA and back as a crow flies.
I spent 277 hours in the saddle. That’s a lot of time to think, and I’ve come up with some of my best ideas on the bike. So, it counts as work, right?
I turned the cranks about 1.3 million times. Sometimes those turns felt effortless and sometimes they felt torturous.
I climbed 172,980 vertical feet. That’s the equivalent of climbing from Mount Everest base camp to the summit 14 times.
I burned 208,669 calories – enough to burn off about 1,000 scoops of ice cream.
*My actual mileage was a little higher because I did a few rides without my cycling computer.
Those may sound like big numbers to some of you, but they’re really not. I’ve been riding for around four years now and am somewhere between a recreational rider and a competitive racer. A more serious cyclist, like Ben, will ride more like 10,000 miles in a year and will be on a highly structured training program. I, on the other hand, ride when I can and there is no rhyme or reason to the intensity or duration of any given ride. I mostly view cycling as a diversion from rock climbing and a way to stay in good cardio condition. That won’t change in 2011, but I do want to be smarter about my training. I’ve definitely plateaued and with a little better planning I can get more gain from the same (or even less) miles. It’s easier said that done — I have a tendency to go hard all the time and need to learn to throttle back.
In terms of overall health, cycling thousands of miles each year probably isn’t the best thing to do. It tends to take you well beyond the “minimum effective dose” for fitness and the damage it does may outweigh the health benefits. I want to be more mindful of that in the future – especially since cycling isn’t the only physical activity I do.
On to 2011…