28 March 2011

Finding the Time to Ride

Well, the ride I had planned with my friend this Saturday didn’t happen. I blame it on trying to pack too much into a 24 hour period.

Here’s how my Saturday went down…

First, I woke up nice and early, and realized that it was below freezing. I still don’t have all of the gear I need to make a cold-weather ride tolerable, so no early-morning ride.

Then, I needed to drive to SLC to pick up some tickets for that night’s Real Salt Lake v. LA Galaxy game. The line for tickets was crazy – glad I showed up early! It went around the ticket building and wrapped back on top of itself.

Back home to pick up the kidlets – who of course weren’t ready – and off to Spanish Fork for the Holi Festival of Colors at the Sri Sri Radha Krishna temple. We had never been, and therefore were not at all prepared for the level of insanity and crowds that we experienced! It was a blast, and a great experience. Will definitely go again next year.

Multiply the number of people in this picture by 10, and you're getting close to the actual number that was there.

Then, a quick 2 mile walk back to the car. (no joke! It was quicker to walk than to wait for the shuttle busses that were provided) and then drive back up to Salt Lake City just in time for the 7:00 kickoff. For those of you who didn’t see the score, Real crushed LA 4-1. Great game!

Finally back home around 10:00 pm for a much-needed shower. 175 miles put on the car.

This is not a typical Saturday schedule for me (thankfully!)

I’m using this as an example of what we sometimes need to deal with in order to squeeze in a ride. Sometimes things work out for us, and we can go out for that 3-4 hour ride. Other times, we’re struggling just to find the time to ride around the block.

Life unfortunately won’t wait, and it is sometimes unforgiving when it comes to activities that aren’t considered crucial.

What is a cyclist to do? We want (need) to get out on our bicycles, not only to maintain or increase our fitness level, but also as a mental break – a respite away from real life.

Some tips on how to fit cycling in to your day:
  • Early morning rides – This one will probably require the purchase of some lights, unless you already have them. Benefit: the roads are usually fairly quiet and free of traffic.  
  • After work – You’ll need to discuss this with your significant other, especially if you normally help make dinner. Maybe you can work out a schedule to have the kids help with dinner while you slip out for a quick hour ride. 
  • Commute by bike – If you are able to, turn your commute into a training session. Pack some work clothes into a bag, or drive in one day with several changes of clothes. You have to make the trip from home to office anyway, might as well make it worthwhile. 
  • Schedule your rides – Instead of trying to fit it in, make it part of your schedule. (“sorry, I can’t make it. I have an important meeting with a Mr. Specialized. Very important!”) If you have it written down in your schedule, you’re less likely to let it be pushed aside by other things.  
How do you fit cycling into your day?

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