Riding This Week


Chainbuster MTB Racing Series - Georgia's friendliest MTB racing. 6 & 9 Hour Endurance racing for solo or teams.

Dirty Spokes - Duathlon and Trail running series. Love these guys. First class events.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

What's so great about riding a bike?

Hello again everyone!

I'm often asked by "non riders" why I make it such a priority to ride my bicycle. It's really a pain. It costs a lot of money for bikes, gear, racks, nutrition, race fees. It takes time to load up everything and drive to a ride then bring it all back. Racing hurts and can be dangerous. Training is a real pain. Intervals, threshold, over/unders. Miles, miles, miles. Not to mention your butt! How do you sit on that seat?

My answers are as varied as the people who ask the questions. Usually I get the "oh, I understand" look by simply asking about their hobby. What do you like to do? Fishing, hunting, golf? What does that cost you? $150 fishing rod? $300 club? How long does it take to play a round of golf? They quickly understand how a hobby works it's way into your subconscious. Especially with men. Our brains are like a bunch of boxes. But that's another story.

Now it's time to tell them the benefits of riding versus most other hobbies. Let's try...exercise! A dirty word to almost 70% of American males. Like anything you take up, biking is a progressive hobby. You can make it as demanding or leisurely as you like. The benefits of taking biking to the next level can be life changing. My friend Dustin Mealor is a great example. He lost 100 pounds by riding. Of course he also did what most Americans can't, he changed his lifestyle and ate correctly. He had a goal and focused on it. Now a lot of guys pick other goals. Shoot that big buck this year. Catch a 10 pound bass. But too few goals in society today result in better health, more energy, and personal satisfaction. I believe riding does. Of course mine is a biased opinion.

I could rattle on about how great biking is but I want these writings to be a quick read so I'll make a list.

Chad's Top Ten Things That Make Biking Great

1. It's great low impact exercise! Easy on the knees. Not so much on the rear at first.
2. Every ride is an adventure! New sights, new friends, new challenges. Even on the same route or trail!
3. You get to "tinker" with your bike! Anybody can work on most things on a bicycle. It's easy and fun.
4. Biking has something for everyone! Mountain, road, TT. Century rides, shop rides. Ride around the neighborhood or climb Brass Town Bald. There are many types of bikes too. Visit your local bike shop for details.
5. A Victory is always possible! Ride the whole trail without stopping. Ride your first century. Race your first crit. Drop your friend. Make it to the spaghetti lunch. Climb that hill faster than ever.
6. Meet new and interesting people who talk like you do! Is that a 12/27? How do you like that saddle? What's your threshold? How do you avoid "bonking"? Is that Campy? Where's the beef?
7. Bike racks make your vehicle cool! A bike rack can turn a piece of junk into a really cool ride. Put a nice bike on it and increase the coolness by a factor of 10. I'm not talking "chic magnet" but you sit a little taller in the seat when there's a bike on the roof.
8. Ride and wear what the pros do! There are few hobbies where the same gear is available (and mostly affordable) that the elite level riders use. We have such a hobby. And I like it!
9. Chic's dig scars! Yes you may crash while riding a bike but at our age a little road rash tells us we're living "dangerously". We take risks. (beat chest with fists) We're men and a little head butting with a tree is what we like. My legs burned, and there wasn't enough oxygen but I made it to the top!
10. Reserved for commentary. Tell me what you guys think should make my Top Ten.

Racing update: Dustin Mealor, Stan White and Chad Edwards (maybe others I know) went to Clemson, SC to race mountain bikes this past weekend. Let me preface the story. Dustin likes the gustow. His mountain bike is stupid lite because it's got the best components. He even went so far as to put a gold plated chain on it. Bling factor went way up. Ok it wasn't real gold but you get the picture. So Dustin lines up on the starting line with great anticipation. He's talked up the competition. He's lied to them about how he doesn't feel good today. He's just here to get a good workout. But in his mind they'll all be breathing his dust. The gun goes off and Dustin powers down on the bling machine to bring the pain and then...the chain breaks.

I'll let Dustin tell you the rest of the story. He still got 10th place!

Thanks for taking time out of your busy day to read my ramblings. Sign up for e-mails to the right over there and get these delivered. Check back often for updates to the rides for the week.

Have a blessed day!



  1. 1. sweat pouring down your head, breathing hard, and knowing you are doing what 80% of the world would not do.

    2. Eating after a long ride.

    3. Suffering, hating the bike, swearing to never do this again, and the you just can" wait to do it all again.

  2. 1. Post ride 'high' you get from nothing else.

    2. Feeling of oneness with the bike after many miles as you the two of you become a finely syncronized machine (read: you finally are in shape).

    3. You can eat anything tonight and it won't matter. Oh wait. Lilly posted that one. Figures.