I just like to ride bikes
Many of us fell in love with bikes as children because of the freedom and fun they provided. As adults, there are so many different ways we can enjoy bicycling and incorporate riding into our lives to recapture that fun and freedom.
I’d like to share my personal “cycling evolution” and diverse photos to encourage you to expand your riding and enjoyment of bicycling.
Today, I use a bicycle almost every day—sometimes for serious recreation rides, occasionally to race and most frequently for transportation. I hope to encourage more bicyclists to replace some car trips with riding their bike.
I’m always a bit hesitant to tell people that I use a bicycle for transportation virtually every day and rarely use a car (my wife and I share one now) for fear that will turn people off from trying a few trips by bicycle. Using a bike for transportation is not an “all or nothing” thing. Try it on the nice days. We have so many!
Ten years ago, I typically drove a car to get around and rode a bicycle almost exclusively for recreation and competition. For me, it was a step-by-step process toward biking more and driving less over these ten years.
I’ve gone from being a serious, lycra-clad rider and racer—including seven self-directed tours of France to see “the Tour”—to an all-around bicyclist who rides for transportation, commuting, shopping, racing and recreation. And I’ve grown to appreciate anyone who has chosen to ride, no matter their choice of bike, attire or classification.
Similarities rather than differences
I’d love for people to focus first on the commonality of riding bikes before jumping to a particular classification, such as: “they’re a racer,” or “what a Fred,” when in fact more and more cyclists are using their bicycles for a range of rides, from transportation to competition.
I’ll never forget the time a bicycle community colleague who is 20-25 years younger (and only knew me as a transportation rider in my street clothes) was really surprised when she saw me for the first time on a road bike in my Primal team kit, passing her on a climb!
For me, bicycling has evolved to a combination of all types of riding and a wide variety of bikes, making virtually every ride a fun experience.
It’s fun to share this collection of photos, riding different bikes, in different configurations and in different attire.
How can you add to the diversity of your riding? What car trips might you replace with a trip by bicycle?
See you down the road somewhere across the state of Colorado. Until then, enjoy the ride!
1. Riding the Koppenberg outside Superior, CO in Boulder county on my treasured Cannondale CAADX with hydraulic disc brakes and Di2 electronic shifting, accompanied by family members Luna (l) and Sprocket (r).
2. Traveling back to the Bicycle Colorado offices on Market Street in lower downtown Denver (LoDo) by Denver B-cycle.
3. Tackling a steep hill (14%) in Simi Valley, CA in my sister’s neighborhood on my beloved Ritchey BreakAway travel bike. Disassembles to fit in an airline regulation sized case.
4. A late spring snow is perfect for the Gates Carbon Drive outfitted commuter bike, which has a belt rather than a chain and internal gearing rather than exposed gears, avoiding any rust or maintenance issues.
5. The Cannondale CAADX is a great cyclocross/gravel grinder bicycle, and it’s perfect as a commuter, accomodating racks, fenders and panniers.
6. Dressing for winter riding is much like dressing for winter sports like skiing—the reason I came to Colorado in the first place!
7. Visibility is most important for riding safety and can be festive and fun with these spoke lights.
8. Cannondales all in a row; my family and I have owned many: road, cross, time trial, mountain. They’re awesome.
9. Fat bikes in the snow can be great fun. The perfect transportation to take the dogs to and from the park. Luna (l) and Sprocket (r).