National Bike Challenge: Results

The National Bike Challenge ended yesterday; how did your spring and summer go?

Due to The Incident, I didn’t quite hit the 750 miles I thought I would, but I ended with 682.8 miles, which is still pretty decent.  I’m looking forward to doing even more next year, but, for now, I’m just glad to be back on the bike.  With winter coming, I’m excited to test out biking in the cold and snow – though it’s probably a few months before I really have to worry about that.


Laid up after accident

The entrance to one of the local bike paths is a bit steep and broken up, so recent(ish) rains have caused sand to pool at the junction of the neighborhood entrance and the bike path.  When I was heading to therapy on Tuesday (to start learning how to deal with stress better), I tried to turn onto the bike path right over that sand, and my touring tires slid out from under me.  I wiped out in a pretty unfortunate way – left foot went under the bike and got sliced up.  It didn’t hurt, and I could feel and move my foot, so I called DW and cycled the last couple miles to therapy and had my (first) appointment.

I didn’t think it was too bad, but DW disagreed, so we went to a clinic after my appointment.  Turns out, I needed twelve stitches – six internal, because the cut was pretty deep.  (On a related note, this is why married men live longer – DW is much smarter about these things than I am.)

Apparently, the reason I wasn’t feeling any pain was because my body shut that shit down with a shock response – which wore off in spectacular fashion overnight, and I’ve been trying to avoid walking ever since.  Should be interesting, since I need to be in the office all this coming week.  DW did get me some crutches, which should help:

Brightened them up with some Disney stickers.

The PA that stitched me up said no exercise for at least two weeks, though I imagine it’ll be a bit longer until I’m back to training for my half marathon.  (Hopefully my running buddy keeps training; I’d feel pretty terrible if my injury held her back.)  I’m looking forward to being back on my bike as soon as possible, though!

If you’re interested in seeing the cut, check it out after the cut:
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August Stats

Student loan interest has gone up another quarter percent, but I anticipate having all student loans paid off within two years, when we sell the house and move to FL.  Actually, selling the house will put me at my goal of being debt free much sooner than I had anticipated when I started this blog, so expect to see different numbers and goals* appearing before then.

Student Loans 3.75% $23,029.93 $180.74 $150.00
Mortgage 3.50% $306,475.72 $2,259.03 $0.00**
Total $329,505.65 $2,439.77 $150.00

Also, how is everyone doing in the National Bike Challenge?  I’m up to 648.6 miles so far.  I’m guessing I’ll hit somewhere north of 750 by the time the Challenge ends in September.


* Though, of course, all of these goals and milestones are working toward one thing:  freedom.  Freedom from work, freedom with my time, freedom to live the life I want.

** There was actually an $80.43 payment made against the mortgage on 8/19, but I have no idea where this came from; I’ve called and they’re researching, so hopefully we’ll know by the end of the month.

09/06/16:  Apparently the $80.43 is a principal reduction that came from the corporate office; not a payment, so I won’t add it to the table, but it did reduce our debt, which is nice.

May Stats

Nothing good on the money front; just the base payments:

Student Loans 3.73% $23,496.24 $180.74 $0.00
Mortgage 3.50% $310,627.10 $2,259.03 $0.00
Total $334,123.34 $2,439.77 $0.00

The renovation is finally moving along quickly, but everything is more expensive than the contractor had allocated – plus, the carpet turned out not to be new, so now our guest room stinks to high heaven.  A good opportunity to learn to replace carpet!  Good weekend project.

On that note, we’re going to Brew at the Zoo at the Baltimore Zoo on Sunday.  It’s a 24.5-mile bike ride one way, so this will be the farthest we’ve ever gone by bike.  I’m a little nervous, since it’ll be so warm, but also pretty excited.

How is everyone getting on with the National Bike Challenge?  Let me know in the comments!  I’m up to 151.1 miles over 13 days of biking.

National Bike Challenge

We finally got bikes on Thursday!  Check mine out:

Before adding lights and other accessories.

The seat on this bike is actually tall enough for me, so I’m having to get used to stopping and starting differently.  The seat is also super hard, which is supposed to be good for you – we’ll see in a couple weeks if my butt bones stop hurting.  The tires are 700c, which is new and different as well.  I’ve put about 20 miles on it so far, and I’m really enjoying the speed and ease with which it rides!  We were on the Washington, Baltimore, and Annapolis Trail today to go to the library – this was my first time on a trail, and it is so much better than sharing a road with cars.  The featured image on this post is from the trail.

Now that we have bikes, we can start prepping for the National Bike Challenge, which starts in just under a month.  From the FAQ:

The National Bike Challenge is a nationwide event uniting thousands of current bicyclists—and encouraging countless new riders. It is a free and easy way to challenge yourself, your colleagues and your community to ride more while competing on a local, state and national level. We aim to unite 100,000 riders to pedal 75 million miles from May 1, 2016 until September 30, 2016.

Whether you bike a lot or a little, the Challenge is a fun way to do some summer riding with friends and community.  You can bike virtually with the thirty to freedom community by joining the Riding To Freedom league under Manage Groups.  I hope to see you all on the roads and trails this summer!  If you don’t have a bike yet – well, what are you waiting for?  Go get one!

(As a quick note, it’s important to know that the National Bike Challenge website is really bad.  I am assuming/hoping that it will be better by the time the Challenge starts, but go in expecting little.  Still fun, though!)