When I first started riding with the bike club on Long Island I had no idea where I was half the time. I used to just go along with the group. Every now and again I would ask where I was and someone would tell me. I tracked my distance, time, temperature, and speed with a simple bike computer. I wanted to buy a Garmin so I could follow a route and not get lost but I couldn’t afford it. I also knew that I’m a control freak and following people around wouldn’t suffice for very long.
One day I got an email from my credit card company. It said that, if I updated my income, I could qualify for a limit increase. I was interested so I logged into my account and did the update. I did qualify and was approved for a 100% increase. I decided right then and there that I would get a Garmin. I did my research and read the reviews to decide which one I should get. I settled on the Garmin Edge 810.
I started riding by myself on Sundays. I followed routes and started learning the roads. I turned when that little device told me to. I was having a great time. During the week, if I left work early, I was still riding around queens so I didn’t ned the Garmin because I knew those roads. Eventually the winter came and I was no longer riding after work.
I’ll eventually get into how I got into spin but after the winter I was still spinning in the morning at 5am. That was tough. I noticed that, with very passing day, the sun started rising earlier and the days were getting longer. I was so over spinning in the morning.
I was speaking with The Señor and he suggested that I start taking my bike with me to work and start riding afterwards. That was a great idea. I starting making routes with different mileage to accommodate whatever amount of time I had. I would load the route that I had the time to do. I rode after work every chance I got. It looked like I was living out of my car but I didn’t care. I was living, I was alive.
I eventually learned the roads to the point that I no longer need the routes. My Garmin became a training tool full of useful information that I upload and analyze. I load routes when I’m away in an area that I’m not familiar with or when I’m with a fast group. I had no idea that, when I bought my Garmin, that I was buying my freedom. Yes, it can be an infuriating little device but when you learn all of it’s little quirks it’s a great tool. I’ve since upgraded to the Garmin Edge 1000 after the 810 got fried. I got a great deal on it because, at that time, I had a hookup and got it at cost.
You will find me out there every chance I get chasing daylight on the roads I’ve learned so well. I mostly decide where I’m going as I go along. I have a great time mixing things up. I know how many miles I can do with the amount of daylight that’s remaining and, for the most part, I make it back before its dark. I get a rush out of chasing the sun. There’s nothing in the world like pressing the pause button of life and spending quality time with my bike.