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lugdoug

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Reply with quote  #1 
I've always been a numbers person. I like numbers. I like the way they quantify things. I tend to test fairly high on the Autism Spectrum. It puts me in the range of Asperger Syndrome. People with Asperger's like concrete concepts and numbers. I like concrete concepts and numbers. 

Perhaps this is why I've always kept a mileage log. This is why I always have a bike computer on my bike. It crazy to think of going out for a ride and at the end not knowing how far I went. It may be why I can't understand people who don't keep track of their mileage ridden.

Newflash: Doug is not keeping track of his miles in 2016. I got a little nauseous just typing that. But it's true. I've always been slow to recover from physical activity. All my life my Mother has said my Father is the same. As I age it gets harder and harder to recover. Even from my daily commute. I used to ride like 350 days a year. The past few years I take as many one day a week off from the bike. That's really helped me enjoy the days on the bike a lot more. I feel fresher. 

The down side of riding less, to help me enjoy the riding more, is my need to know the numbers. I now realize there were many rides or extended rides in he past I did just to maintain an average daily mileage I was shooting for. I came to the conclusion not all the miles I was riding were "fun" miles. That's the point for me. Fun! I was riding miles just to reach a mileage goal. Miles that stopped being fun. Extra miles that made it hard to recover for the next day.

So I decided no more. I'm riding for quality not quantity from now on. I'll still keep my bike computers and be able to know how long my rides are. But I won't keep a running tally of yearly mileage. I don't want to know or feel stressed for not getting in enough miles.

Wish me luck!

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bertinjim

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Reply with quote  #2 
Doug-

Good call. My first computer was my last. The data obscured the joy. The computer came off and I can't even remember what I did with it. 

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Pondero

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Reply with quote  #3 
As some of you know, I log hours instead of miles. It relates to Doug's quality, not quantity objective. I do set monthly targets that are based on a balance of (1) allowing for other life responsibilities, (2) not becoming a slave to the goal and harming the quality of my outings, and (3) spending enough time on excursions to get the (primarily) mental/attitude health benefits I have learned are very real and important to me. I have a custom designed spreadsheet, complete with charts, to help me make sure life doesn't overly distract me.

How does it work? One hour ride to the park, plus one hour making coffee, sipping it while soaking in the sights, and re packing my toys, plus one hour to ride home...equals three hours in the log.

So, yes, quality...

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graveldoc

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Reply with quote  #4 
I don't use a computer either, though I could see some benefit such as in longer distance touring over unknown roads. I tend to just estimate miles ridden and know what's comfortable versus what wears me out. To me it's more about enjoyment (with joy being the operative word).
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Spencer

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Reply with quote  #5 
I have a wired computer on my straggler and spent some time and effort time adjusting the tire size component of the setup to make it as accurate as possible. I did my best to remove any systematic errors , in real life I am a surveyor so that kind of thing is important to me. The Straggler has been the go to bike for long rides when I am following a cue sheet in the mountains and back roads where cell service is not always guaranteed and GPS signals can be lost when you are climbing out of the valleys. It is nice to have a good map and have some confidence in your Odometer. Rides like the D2R2 are over back roads where road signs and locals are scarce and a bad decision at a turn can cause hours of second guessing and anguish. I have seen small groups hesitate and blindly make a left...when the actual left is up the road a bit. As a trip progresses, I will note the delta between the posted mileage and the ODO mileage and apply that going forward, sometimes it is a negative, sometimes a positive.

If I am not trying to follow a cue sheet, I don't generally track the route but sometimes it is fun to trace out the route (if I can remember it) on Ride with GPS just to see how far it was and how much climbing there was.

Then there are times when I just grab the basket bike and head on down to the river, stop and chat with the fishermen, check out the metal dumpster, maybe stop at a yard sale....I gotta get a coffee setup. Some of the most enjoyable rides are with family or friends, jogging along, chatting, going at their pace.

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adventurepdx

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Reply with quote  #6 
I don't believe a cycle computer is a tool of the devil, but it's definitely a tool! The key thing is to never let "data obscure joy". I'm not one of those people who have mileage goals or log that stuff on spreadsheets. For me, it's just cool to see how many miles I do in a day, say "cool", then erase it. (Or sometimes it's fun to see how fast it is that I'm bombing down that hill. [biggrin])And as Spencer mentioned, having an odometer is useful for figuring out distances on bike tours and cue sheets. The only time I log miles is on tour, because for me it's just fun to figure out how far I've gone. Otherwise I don't record anything.

If you are a person who obsesses over numbers, I can see how having a computer can be dangerous. But to me, it's just a tool that's sometimes useful.

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Louis

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Reply with quote  #7 
Quote:
Originally Posted by adventurepdx
I don't believe a cycle computer is a tool of the devil, but it's definitely a tool! The key thing is to never let "data obscure joy". I'm not one of those people who have mileage goals or log that stuff on spreadsheets. For me, it's just cool to see how many miles I do in a day, say "cool", then erase it. (Or sometimes it's fun to see how fast it is that I'm bombing down that hill. [biggrin])And as Spencer mentioned, having an odometer is useful for figuring out distances on bike tours and cue sheets. The only time I log miles is on tour, because for me it's just fun to figure out how far I've gone. Otherwise I don't record anything.

If you are a person who obsesses over numbers, I can see how having a computer can be dangerous. But to me, it's just a tool that's sometimes useful.

This describes me to a T.

As a club rider I was always put off by everyone's obsession with average speed. Many riders were not happy unless a certain number could be achieved. Finally I had enough and quit the club scene altogether. 
At last I was free to have fun.
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tallbikeman

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Reply with quote  #8 
Am I a data bum?  I love all the insight to just having a bicycle mileage, mph/kph, timing device and what that may mean.  I found myself thinking about why I use a cycle computer.  I guess the first reason is that I get pleasure from knowing how fast I'm going and  how far I went.  When first I got the cyclometer ( I hope that is the right term) I started setting goals.  I found over time that I was mainly interested in three things, speed in mph, average speed (mph), and least important was time riding. As mentioned in other replies, I will stop for anything that interests me and spend time enjoying that interest.  I do try to maintain as high an average speed as possible without physically crippling myself for the next three days after a ride.  So my rides really hinge on local weather conditions such as wind speed and direction, the geography of the ride, and how I am feeling physically/mentally.  I have some loose rules about hiking and bicycle riding that I always try to follow:  Start the hike/bicycling into the wind so that the last half of the ride is mainly downwind.  Start uphill first so that the last half of the ride is downhill. Find routes with the least traffic and widest shoulders with the slowest traffic.  This last rule will help prolong our lives.  Can't help you with multiple hills. These simple rules go a long way to making rides enjoyable.  However some rides do end by going upwind or uphill or on crappy overcarpulated roads. After the initial thrill of having all this data I now find myself falling on the side of quality of ride distantly followed by quantity. No mileage log, no club riding, just letting the wind clean out the dross between my ears.
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anniebikes

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Reply with quote  #9 
One year my husband gave me a bike computer for Christmas. i tried not to let him see my disappointment and asked him to put it on my bike for me. Somehow he lost interest and I never had to endure being asslave to a computer. I track my daily mileage in my paper calender, but it's guesswork, usually logging my commuter miles, which constitutes most of my yearly mileage. I'm not obsessive about it though. This year it's useful to see how many days I'm riding throughout the winter.
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