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A new year

January 5, 2010

I admit it. I have succumbed.

Like the majority of the six-plus billion people on this planet, I have starting envisioning my life for the upcoming year. What is it about the turning of a calendar page that starts us thinking about how much weight we can lose, how much money we can make… or how many miles we’re going to ride in the coming year? In the practice of Buddhism, we have the opportunity every day to begin anew, yet most of us frequently only see that date of January 1 as an opportunity to get our lives together and make some changes.

I haven’t “made resolutions” per se for some time. I often think about how I would like the new year to flow, but my thoughts haven’t solidified to actually putting them on paper. I recently found online (through serendipity, rather than through searching) a couple of articles about resolutions and how to be more effective in keeping them.

The key, apparently, to staying focused on your year’s goals—and in attaining them—is to be specific. Rather than thinking: “I’m going to ride my motorcycle more this year,” I need to actually set a mileage goal. Otherwise, I’m only going to be grabbing the opportunity to ride back and forth to work and whatever else comes along. At a commute to my office of only eight miles round-trip, that will not get me anywhere near my goal of riding more.

Therefore, I resolve…
(Can you picture me grinning?)

Here is my odometer reading as of January 4, 2010. In case the picture is too small, that says 6,289 miles. Yep. That’s all.

I have not yet ridden in the four days of this year, although my bike has been ridden… Tony borrowed it. His Miata’s master clutch cylinder failed, and his own bike has ignition switch trouble (due to our coastal salt air, most likely…)

A good place for me to start making a realistic mileage goal for the year might be thinking about where I want to ride this year, typical weekend rides we take, and then look at how many more miles I might want to put on. In the past two years of solid riding, I have averaged 5,500 miles per year. That doesn’t seem like enough riding for this year.

Here’s how I am breaking down this year’s potential riding miles:

    Women’s Ride-In Weekend (in the planning stages): potentially Grover Hot Springs near Markleeville CA (doesn’t that sound nice, ladies?): 674 miles round-trip (does not include spectacular day trip or two through the Sierras, or up to and around Lake Tahoe, potentially more miles).

    Trip to Washington, whether my parents are available for a visit or not (there are rumors they are relocating to Mexico!): a very approximate round trip of 1,937 miles, going up the coast and coming back via I-5.

    MotoGP in Monterey, last weekend in July: 572 miles RT

    The usual weekend rides, anywhere from 65 miles (Ukiah), to 130 (Leggett loop), to 210 (Santa Rosa), all round-trip figures: 1,620 miles (using an average of twelve available weekend days to ride and alternating the three distances. Why not more days available you might ask? One word: Custody. My daughter is with me every other weekend, and I don’t know that she’s going to be very comfortable riding passenger on my green machine. But maybe.)

    I have vowed to ride more with my friend Cindi who lives in Novato, about 290 miles round-trip. This shouldn’t be difficult to achieve, considering we didn’t ride together once last year. So: Riding to Novato and back, at least twice: 580 miles

    Daily commute: 8 miles RT, as often as possible…

Not counting the commute miles, I’m up to 5,383…hmmm, that just doesn’t sound like enough.

Okay, I’m adding on a two-day trip to Fortuna, over Hwy 36 to Red Bluff and then home: 500 miles. That puts me up to 5,883.

I need some more miles here… anyone want to make me an offer for some high mileage weekend riding???
(There’s that grin again…)


What other motorcycling goals do I have?

I would like to write more, increasing my blog’s readership and subscribership; take an MSF Experienced Rider Course; start filming portions of the video I’m scripting, of a series of stretches I have designed specifically for motorcyclists; and, take my daughter on a long weekend ride somewhere, just so she can get a taste of touring on a bike. Which reminds of another goal: To obtain a sport-touring style bike that might be more comfortable for passenger riding.

I cannot leave out another important goal I have: To meet in person some of the people I have met online, through Twitter, forums, or blogs. I’m looking very much forward to meeting many of you and riding with some.

Cheers to you all, in this new year of possibilities. May your road be wide open (with a few twisties thrown in for fun), smooth, and most of all, safe. Happy 2010 and happy right now.

I’m on my way out the door to start my bike…

9 Comments leave one →
  1. January 5, 2010 6:29 pm

    Good luck with your goals. If you ever make it to the southern states, give me a shout!
    Have fun and ride safe.

  2. January 5, 2010 6:53 pm

    Wonderful post and great idea! I can’t believe that when I blogged about my goals for 2010, I left out a riding goal! Wow…thanks for the reminder! I might have to mention the addition in my next blog post 😉

  3. January 5, 2010 7:18 pm

    And I forgot to mention that these are only my goals related to motorcycling. I have personal goals as well. Am I overdoing it? Definitely not!

    I’ll look forward to reading about your goals, Maria, riding and otherwise!

  4. January 6, 2010 2:24 am

    You’ve been doing a heck of a lot of evaluating…looking forward…reflecting back.
    I’ve found it’s best to review the goals daily. It helps to keep you focused.

    Be well, I’m happy to have found your blog.

  5. January 7, 2010 6:55 am

    I would total tour with you, that is if I rode a motorcycle myself 😉 But goals are a great thing…it gives us something to work towards, keeps us motivated and out of those dang ruts we sometimes get into! What a great experience for your daughter, to be able to ride with her mom – now those are GREAT memories for you two to share for a lifetime.

    p.s. I linked your blog on mine…

  6. January 11, 2010 10:43 pm

    Some folks just seem to roll up the miles! It leaves me green with envy. :mrgreen:

    Looks like you and I are in the same boat. Our commutes are short and sweet, so we can’t accumulate much daily mileage… at least we ride almost every day, right!

    The 40k ladies in my WITW chapter are both retired, so I think the solution for racking up major mileage is quitting my job. But then I wouldn’t have any money. Or a house, either. Alas…

    • January 23, 2010 5:55 am

      Hey Stacy:
      I can’t WAIT until I am one of those 40K per year gals! I’d like to think it won’t take being retired to do that (sometimes I wonder if I will ever GET to retire!). As it is, I get a ride in when I can and I do a LOT of riding in the summer. I have to admit I’m not quite as dedicated to riding in the rain and cold as you are, and I also have a kid and her stuff to tote around. Maybe some good riding gear for the kid, and some heated gear for me? Hmmm…

  7. January 23, 2010 5:56 am

    Thanks for the kind comments. I’m happy to have found your blog, too! What a great community we take part in.

    Be well.

  8. January 23, 2010 5:58 am

    And Tammie,
    Maybe if you hang around me long enough, you’ll find out how much fun riding can be, and you’ll want to step over that fear and try it out yourself!

    In the meantime, you are taking brave steps toward a career you had never before envisioned for yourself, and that is incredible!

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