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22 Aug ’11 Comments (12) Blog, Motivation Monday

Motivational Monday: Why Do YOU Ride?

Motivational Monday
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A couple of my friends are currently riding their bicycles across the great United States. Starting in Oregon and slowly making their way back to Charlotte, NC. You can track their progress online and they give Facebook updates with photos every few days.

All summer long I can say I have been jealous of this movement. To remove myself from the plugged in life. To not wake up to go to the gym, or to work or to some other tasks I need to complete. To be able to live by bike, to wake up to simply ride my bike a little further down an asphalt ribbon on the large map of the United States.

This act that my friends are taking on stirs up feelings of being a kid and the bike being the reason I felt freedom for the first time in my life, or felt that I could conquer a tasks that none of my peers could fathom.

Why Do You Ride?

The question above is asked often for online interviews, surveys or by friends that don’t ride their bikes.  The answer, depending on the day, changes with me. A year ago, I would say I bike to feel free everyday on my commute. These days I bike to find myself for a few moments. In order to remove myself from the constant thought that goes along in my head.

There are days that I ride my bike for the adventure. How far can I go today? Is the path I chose too long, will I make it home before dark, am I lost? All these questions are so different than the everyday questions we deal with, and it is a very refreshing feeling!

Where am I going with this? I want to know why you ride. Who do you ride for, what motivates you, what is the feeling you think of when you think of sitting your butt on that saddle for a few hours at a time.

12 Responses to Motivational Monday: Why Do YOU Ride?

  1. Larry Staton Jr. says:

    I ride to stay in shape, to help the environment, to wind down after a long day, to challenge myself, to experience the world around me, to encourage others to ride, and to advocate cycling.

  2. R.White says:

    to clear my mind, for my health, because its fun! Because you don’t have to drive a car to the store a mile away. Because it makes you a part of your surroundings (instead of inside the glass cocoon of a car). Because of the smells, the sights, the sounds.

  3. Mark says:

    Cycling is my warm glass of milk before sleepy time
    When – When the family goes to bed, I hop on the bike for solo night rides
    Where – Minneapolis, MN – The Grand Round “Northside”
    Why – It’s my alone time to process what the day has just thrown me / get ready for the next day. My rides end with a smile, eagerness for the next day and…maybe a Miller Highlife.

    Cheers
    Mark // Twin Six

  4. Audrey says:

    I started riding because I couldn’t afford a car.

    I kept riding because it made me so much happier than driving. I smelled sunrises and watched tomatoes grow and let the desert into my lungs.

    When I told my partner I needed more than one bike, I learned to stand my ground and really think about what I liked in a bike, what made me happy about being a year-round commuter and a crazy person.

    But once I learned to fix bikes though, there was no turning back. Every chain I change, every brake pad I replace, I’m smarter and better equipped to deal with this modern world.

  5. jheri says:

    Living in København, Danmark I have two distinct types of riding. The first is utilitarian. This is a city of cyclists and bikes are often the best way to get around. I don’t have a car and really don’t miss having one. I even ride in the snow as do so many of my fellow citizens. When I had to move to a new apartment I rented a cargo bike and did everything myself.

    My commute bike is an old big black Batavus that just goes anywhere through anything. It makes me feel part of the city.

    But I have another bike. A custom bright red fixie with a frame built to my measurements (I’m ridiculously tall). I call her Kirsebær, which is cherry in Danish. She is not practical and neither am I went I’m on her. She is for the pure enjoyment of both of us flying through the city and the countryside.

    A friend asked me to write a bit on how I have adventures with her so children might understand it and here is what I wrote:

    http://www.6footsix.com/my_weblog/2008/08/jheri-chases-af.html

  6. Jim says:

    I mostly ride montain bike trails to stay in shape, to spend time outdoors and to escape from the everyday drudgery. It also gives me a chance to take a mental rest as I enjoy the enviroment around me and try new challenges to test my skill levels. A sense of accomplishment when I tame that trail feature I once thought insurmountable. Other times I ride to go to the store or catch the bus. Not only is it good for me but it leaves my truck parked at home.

  7. Jason A. says:

    I ride for many reasons, fitness, stress relief, adventure but mostly I ride for the pure joy and child like delight it brings. I fell in love with riding as a kid and the sense of freedom and adventure it brought. I still feel that way today when I throw a leg over a bike wether it’s a trail ride, road ride or just a quick spin around the block it makes me feel like a kid again. Now as a Dad I’m looking forward to sharing this passion with my kids and passing along this simple joy to another generation just as my Dad did for me.

  8. Nikki says:

    Because it lets me discover amazing things about my city… like the guy tonight that took advantage of the amazing weather to set up his drum kit in a parking space in the national park on the river, 2/3 of the way around, and play his heart out for every one that was cycling, jogging, roller-blading and walking past on the 3+ mile loop.

  9. Leo H. says:

    I started riding again because I had a Suburban as a primary vehicle, and once I started thinking about riding to work it scared me. So pushing myself through that nervousness allowed me to discover not only could I ride the distance to work that concerned me, there were all SORTS of places I could now ride to.
    This went along with the discovery that, no matter how old you are, riding a bike is a pleasurable experience. The same feelings you had as a kid, for whatever reason, seem to come back to you at any age. It’s fun, but it’s weird.
    Since then, the past 4 years, I’ve tripled my yearly mileage, bought a trailer to bring my dogs along when feasible, and built a Madsen cargo bike.
    I enjoy encouraging others to swing a leg over the seat and any advocacy opportunity that presents itself.

  10. I ride to stay in shape, to explore & not loose that kid like thrill of freedom, and change my perspective of how I experience the world

  11. […] Motivational Monday: Why Do YOU Ride? (and go back and read the profiles she’s been writing each […]

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