was like most kids in the Midwest United States in the 1960’s. If you were
cool, you had a banana seat bike. –A chopper with pedals. The real cool kids
had the five speed orange crates or apple crates with hand brakes -guess
what colors they were. Mine was one speed. I pushed backwards on the pedals
to stop. Trails we had were old dirt roads that led to an old farmhouse (the
farmhouse where I was born) and a steep range of hills that were named
creatively: “the hills.”
As I grew into adulthood, I was riding a Schwinn 10-speed. I graduated from
the University of Illinois and
moved to St. Louis where I remember riding that bike all through the streets
of Soulard, West Park, and speeding 50 miles per hour down the long
gradual hill that is Dellmar Avenue. It was dangerous as hell then, and
probably suicide today.
I don't consider myself "Joe Bike,” but from the time they were
first available, I had a bicycle computer that would give: average speed,
maximum speed, distance, and trip time. Performance Improvement is about
measuring and tracking results. Satisfaction comes from developing personal goals and surpassing them. It's
fitting that my livelihood depends on how
well I can help develop goals and achieve them for others. This trip had a goal, and
because I made it a priority, I hit the trail and achieved it. There is
satisfaction in that. -A feeling of accomplishment.
I’ve jumped out of planes, trekked across glaciers, and climbed desert
towers. All of them give that same feeling. …well maybe not jumping out of
planes. That is more like cris-crossing Europe on a motorcycle; it’s an
accomplishment, but it just doesn’t have the crucial
physical element that yields satisfaction.
From a physical standpoint, nothing really compares to a
multi-day bicycle ride.
The workout is strenuous.
You are pedaling a bike not trouncing your feet on a run or
jog. It's low impact.
The 50 pound pack is attached to the bike and not your back.
You just don’t stress your skeletal system the way you would on foot.
If the pedaling gets too hard, torque can be adjusted with
the gearing system.