Between the cargo-biking I'd done yesterday in near-freezing weather, staying up late last night, and the 28F thermometer reading that greeted me this morning, I decided that today would be a decent day to stay off my bicycle, at least during the early morning hours. At 11am, it's still below 30F and while I would love to go for a ride emotionally, physically my body is feel quite content to sit in my woolies and slippers and sip coffee awhile longer. So today may be a bicycle-free New Year's Day.
Tallying up my mileage, I'd thought that I wouldn't break 2,400 miles (my goal had been 2,500 but travel and job change nipped that in the bud). Checking the math again this morning and correcting an addition error (because I stubbornly insist on doing the math manually and I only check it with calculator quarterly), I discover that I did indeed break the 2,400-mile mark by 26 miles.
Total miles ridden, 2012: 2,426.0
Average miles ridden per week: 46.7
Considering that I did not train for racing and only raced three times, the final tally doesn't surprise me.
Will I race in 2013? I would like to. But my new line of work has already preempted cyclocross, and while my local short-track series is still an option in the summer, training for it will be haphazard at best. I can't afford a gym membership and I am working far less with my whole body now, so anything resembling "training" will mostly consist of riding my bike as much as I can and throwing in a few intervals here and there as the season approaches. The possibility of a three-week out-of-town gig in June could effectively cut my racing season in half, and vacation plans for July could knock it down to three races again since I return to teaching work in August.
So if I'm being realistic about this, racing seems like a fading priority as my opportunities in music and education continue to slowly expand. I will continue to support OBRA because I think they're a first-class organization; so even if I stop racing altogether I will probably maintain a membership of some kind to show my support. And even if I stopr acing, I will remain connected to my team as a friend of the house for as long as the team is around and active. So my bicycle involvement will remain, as much as my life and work allow.
Then, too, there's the question of maintaining a bicycle-themed blog. Does it really matter as much?
2012 was a year of momentous change for me, especially as it pertains to my career and my professional identity. I no longer work in the bicycle industry, and even if I were to return it would be on a very part-time, seasonal basis at most -- and again, only until I grow my opportunities in my new line of work. Having the key to the candy store, as it were, holds little allure for me now. I am sitting on a small stockpile of older parts and accessories that I seldom use and which I am slowly selling or trading away. I remain passionate about bicycles and bike riding, but feel less and less inclined to write about it so often, especially as my interest in bicycle-related consumerism shrinks. And frankly, I don't feel enthusiastic about where the industry is headed. I am, by my own admission, an Old Fart, with an archaic knowledge base and little or no interest in things like carbon-fiber, suspension, or belt-drive. I ride steel frames. I run pure friction on all of my bikes. My bikes are built to last a good long while and I don't expect to do much tweaking of what already works well enough. And I don't have space to store the dozens of bikes that so many of my fellow enthusiasts seem to own.
In the grand scheme of things, I find I am approaching a greater sense of contentedness about the bikes I own and where and how I ride them. And more and more it is about simply going out and riding, rather than analyzing it.
So I am inclined to let go of this blog and move onto other things.
I won't necessarily take up the slack vis-a-vis Facebook or Twitter, as I don't own a "smart" phone and don't plan on buying one in the near future -- too expensive and frankly I prefer to live in real time, face-to-face with my experiences and friends.
I know of a couple of fellow bicycle-bloggers who have given up blogging in the last couple of years (most recently, pal Judi has decided to put her Miles and Madness blog on ice as she prepares for an exciting new chapter in her career trajectory). Does the world miss all that blogging? Does it miss the white noise of Too Much Information?
I'm about to find out.
I'm putting Bikelovejones on ice for a little while.
If you still want to read my writing, you can check out my other blog, which talks about the current trajectory of my career transition and doubles as a publicity page for my music:
Happy 2013 and may all your rides be lovely.