Taking the 30 Days of Biking Pledge in Minnesota
It seems like every week on Facebook, one friend or another is participating in a running race or a triathlon. Their posts always inspire me, and I have been thinking about “joining the club”. While athletics were a huge part of my life in high school and college, my participation in sports since motherhood has consisted mainly of playing with the kids in the backyard. Of all the sports we play, riding our bikes by far has become my favorite family activity. I love bicycling because it the perfect way to get some exercise and experience all that nature has to offer: to spy some wildlife, to hear the call of a songbird, and to smell the fresh morning or evening air.
It also doesn’t hurt that biking helps to get my kids’ energy out and it’s the sport that results in the least amount of arguing between the two of them. No scores to keep, no problem!
Recently while scrolling through my Twitter feed, I came across an Explore Minnesota Tourism article advertising a unique Minnesota biking challenge called 30 Days of Biking. During this challenge, riders pledge to ride their bikes every day during the month of April and share their experiences on social media. 30 Days of Biking seemed like the perfect exercise challenge for a person like me, so I have taken the pledge. The great thing about this challenge is that you don’t have to be a hard-core athlete to participate. You don’t have to bike 50 miles a day…or even five miles a day. You just need to get on the bike and ride. I love the idea of an exercise challenge where anyone can participate, no matter your skill level.
Another reason to love this challenge is that you don’t need any special equipment to complete it. Any bicycle will do. Take my old wheels for example. I bought my bike twenty-two years ago while working in the foothills of the Wind River Range in Wyoming. Working through the Student Conservation Association as a museum naturalist, I got paid a stipend of $50 a week plus free housing. Besides my stipend, I took a part-time job cleaning a local bar…a very gross job I might add. I did it to buy a bike and explore the beautiful Wyoming countryside. This bike has been everywhere with me and I’m not quite ready to part with it. I’m confident it will get me through the challenge!
Goals for 30 Days of Biking
I’ve been thinking a lot about the 30 Days of Biking challenge since I made the pledge and have come up with three goals for my month of biking.
- Recruit my husband and kids to join me as much as possible. It’s been a long winter and we’ve spent much of it inside. We all could use the exercise!
- Bike a minimum of two miles each day. This may seem like a measly amount to serious bicyclists but with work schedules and running the kids to their activities, this amount seems like a reasonable goal for me and my family. I’ll be aiming for five or ten and maybe finish the month with a twenty-mile ride, but for busy days, the minimum goal is two.
- Try mountain biking and bike places that I haven’t been to before. While I have been around the paved trails in my area, I have never officially taken my bike on a dirt trail. Luckily there are several trails that have been developed recently in Rice County where I live. They include Sechler Park in Northfield, Caron Park in rural Faribault, and River Bend Nature Center in Faribault.
I am looking forward to my upcoming biking adventure in April during the 30 Days of Biking challenge. Follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to view my progress. I will also be featuring posts about Minnesota biking destinations, resources, and events during April. Comment or tweet me @MinnWonders to share with me your favorite biking spots in Minnesota.
Links to 30 Days of Biking
- Check out 30 Days of Biking on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram
- Here are some great websites that feature information about Minnesota bike trails. Check out TrailLink, Minnesota DNR, MN Bike Trail Navigator, and Minnesota Trails Magazine