Setting a yearly mileage goal, and then keeping track of the miles you’ve ridden is a great way to keep yourself motivated, and can lead to a great sense of accomplishment when you hit your target.
You can keep track of your mileage in a number of ways:
- Clear your cyclocomputer’s odometer at the beginning of the year, then you can easily see your total yearly mileage at any time. However, this approach doesn’t work if you ride more than one bike (unless you can easily move the computer from bike to bike).
- Track your mileage using a computer spreadsheet. You can use Microsoft Excel, OpenOffice Calc (it’s free), or an online spreadsheet such as the one provided by Google Docs. Just set up columns for dates, ride descriptions, and miles, and sum the miles at the bottom of the mileage column. You can also add columns for ride time and average speed, if you like.
- Use an online mileage tracking site. There are quite a number of these, but here are the ones I’m most familiar with:
- BikeJournal – This is probably the biggest ride logging site, with over 32,000 members. It’s fun to compare your mileage against other riders on a local, state, national, and international basis. Keeping your ranking up can be great motivation for getting out and riding.
- ActiveBody – This site allows you to track not just your cycling miles, but running, walking, swimming, workouts, and weight, all from one site.
- VeloD – This is a relatively new site, but has all the basics, plus a number of innovative features. This site is run by an Olathe, Kansas company, Keyhole Software.
- MapMyRide – Offers an excellent mapping engine, as well as ride logging capabilities. There’s also a Kansas Cyclists group at MapMyRide.
How do you log your miles?
Some (that would be me) even use more than one of these methods, to get different perspectives on the data.
However, the primary site I use if BikeJournal. I find the comparisons useful, plus I get to brag on my numbers. For example, in 2008 I finished with 6000 miles, which put me #4 in the state of Kansas, and approximately #584 worldwide. Pretty cool!
Some additional interesting stats from BikeJournal: In 2008, Kansas ranked #23 in the nation with 213,724 miles logged (121 active riders at an average of 1,766 miles per rider). Other states in the region: Arkansas (#17 / 257,821 miles / 145 riders / 1,778 miles/rider), Colorado (#14 / 286,804 / 196 / 1,463), Iowa (#30 / 119,017 / 66 / 1,803), Missouri (#16 / 272,624 / 149 / 1,830), Nebraska (#28 / 154,072 / 90 / 1,712), Oklahoma (#29 / 122,485 / 94 / 1,303).
OK, Kansans, step it up for 2009 — state pride is at stake!
Feel free to share your 2008 stats in the comments…