Today marks the 100th day since I decided on the 23rd of January that I would ride for 5,000 kilometres this year. Even though I might not have been on the bike every single one of those 100 days, I am still very happy with my achievement so far. I will get into a little more detail below, but to basically sum it up I am 100% on target at the moment for hitting my goal.
I might have set the goal myself, but it is one of those things that I half expected would go by the wayside. That is the way many goals like this end up. But at the same time by putting it out publically on the blog here I saw some added accountability for myself. Which of course is why I am sharing an update here, to be accountable beyond just myself.
I was going to share this update last week, but when I realised how close I was to 100 days, held off a little. My Current total distance on the bike is 1,351.9 km. That is around 27% of the total 5,000 km goal that I want to achieve. Based on my calculations as long as I average 15km per day for the rest of the year I will be a little ahead of my goal.
Getting into this position of being on target only occurred around a week ago. It has been the result of a more focused push to be on the bike every day throughout April, with a minimum of 10km per day. Plus I have also had eight days through April where I have exceeded 20km and even a couple of 30km days.
April Bike Summary
By far the month of April has been my best month yet, riding a total distance of 537 km and being on the bike every day. Across the month this has given me an average daily distance of 17.9 km with a low of 10.3 km and a high of 30.6 km. The result of this concentrated effort has been to decrease my required daily average from 15.2km per day to 14.9 km.
To give a little context to the above numbers, I will share some of the numbers from the previous months below.
- In January I was on the bike a total of 9 days and covered 124.6 km. My lowest day on the bike was 7.2 km and my highest day was 18.7 km.
- In February I was on the bike a total of 26 days and covered 389.9 km. My lowest day on the bike was 5.0 km and my highest day was 33.4 km.
- In March I was on the bike a total of 19 days and covered 300.5 km. My lowest day on the bike was 6.0 km and my highest day was 25.6 km.
As you can see the results in April have pushed well beyond those of the previous three months. There have been a couple of reasons why this has happened I think.
Making The Effort
After a couple of months that saw me achieving below what I would need to achieve my goal, I knew something needed to change. I made four changes to try and help me achieve a little higher than I had been in previous months. These included being on the bike every day for a minimum of 10km, setting a weekly target and splitting my time on the bike if I had to.
On The Bike Every Day
When it comes to being on the bike there are plenty of things that can get in the way. Through March I had a week of bad weather plus another five days away from home. Being away from home can be difficult to get around, but a bit of rain should not stop me being on the bike. So my goal is to be on the bike every day that I am at home.
It can be a downhill slope if you decide to skip a day just because of how much it pushes over onto your future daily targets. Besides that skipping one day often makes it feel much easier to skip the next day or another in the future. That is not to say that you do not need to take breaks at times, but they need to be approached with a plan, instead of randomly.
Minimum 10km Each Day
At the moment to achieve the 5,000 km goal I need to be riding on average 14.9 km per day. Every full day that I do not get on the bike increases this future daily average needed by a little bit. But if you were to miss one whole day every month for the rest of the year on average that is 119.2 km. At this point that is like an additional 0.5 km per day to make that up.
On the other hand, by looking to stick to a minimum of 10 km per day, I have a much smaller deficit each day I am short. Worst case I need to make up 4.9 km, but it is rare that once I get to 10 km I am on the doorstep of home. It is much more likely if I make 10 km I will land somewhere between 10 km and 14.9 km.
Split The Ride If I Have To
The reality is that there are times where it might be a challenge to fit 10km in one stretch. But I might be able to get on the bike for 20 minutes in the morning and 20 minutes in the afternoon. In these cases, it helps to break the potential excuse of not having time. Even on days when it is bad weather maybe three or four 10 minute stints will get me there between showers. While I might not get the maximum results from shorter stints it helps to achieve the goal and avoid excuses.
Finally, I have started to set myself a minimum weekly target. Currently, at 14.9 km per day required to reach my target, this would work out to 104.3 km per week. However, I have set my weekly target so far at 110 km per week. Part of this choice started with dividing the distance left by the number of weeks ahead. Since I was a little behind at the start of April that is where the slightly higher target came from. But it seems like a nice figure to aim for each week as well.
Enjoying The Ride
I think that sums up where I am at with this goal, at the 100-day mark. I am still deciding if I will update on a monthly basis from here out. The alternative would be to update at day milestones such as 100, 150, 200, etc. I will see what I have to share at the end of May and go from there.