If you’re old enough you may remember Gilligan’s Island and the three-hour tour… three-hour tour.
Got the song in your head now? Me too. Sorry.
About the Two Mile Tour. I came across this cartoon by Bikeyface on Twitter last week. It hit home with me.
Riding a bike doesn’t mean riding some long distance, well it doesn’t only mean that. Riding a bike can mean pedaling for a block, a mile, two miles or a century. It’s all riding.
So it is about the bike, but it isn’t about the distance. Cyclists, myself included, tend to get hung up on mileage and speed. That’s changing for me though.
With my attempt to ride every day – prompted by April’s #30DaysofBiking – I’m learning a bike ride doesn’t have to be at least 20 miles to be worth doing. I wasn’t aware I operated on that belief but I did.
With the #RideEveryDay policy some days my bike ride has been as short as a mile or even less on a few days when it was pouring. RideEveryDay isn’t about the miles as much as it’s about riding the bike every single day no matter what. I’ve missed a day, May 8th, because I was away from home and didn’t have a bike, but otherwise I have.
Bikeyface’s point is that just about anyone can ride two miles and then build on it if they want. They may never choose to ride further than a couple of miles and that’s okay.
They may never choose to wear lycra shorts or use clipless pedals and that’s okay too. Good in fact.
Honestly I’m relatively new to the camp of “biking” rather than “cycling”, where with the former anyone can do it, and the latter is populated by two-wheeled addicts (or enthusiasts if you prefer) like myself and probably you with our high tech gear on our high-end bikes.
If you pay great attention to wind speed and direction you’re likely in the cycling camp. Before smart phones and apps the weather channel was my most viewed cable channel.
I get that the cycling model I’ve always subscribed to has not appealed to the majority of people. It hasn’t brought bicycling to the masses by any stretch. Seems to me that most of the new people coming to cycling/bicyling just aren’t interested in seeing how fast and how far they can ride. They aren’t interested in what their resting heart rate is (46) or their average speed (15-16 if it’s flat). They are drawn to biking for transportation and fun.
Personally I don’t care what brings people to biking just so long as they’re here.
The love of bikes can include all of us: athlete types, people riding for transportation and the people who haven’t been on a bike in years but remember it fondly and want to try it again, just for the fun of it.
For those people, two mile tours, in street clothes, sans helmet if they choose, might just be the ticket to get them riding. Hope so.