Thursday, September 29, 2011

Technical details

One of the things that helps the time go by when I'm on the bike for 6, 7, 8, 9 hours is the GPS watch that measures the time and distance of my ride using GPS tracking. It chirps at me every mile, and the time of the last mile pops up on the screen. I can tell if I've been flying or if the hills have slowed me down a lot. Today, though, the watch wasn't charged all the way and died at mile 92. So the last 16 mile, I felt a little lost. The watch's mileage tracking also tells me when to turn. So when my que sheet might say to turn left on Trinity Road at mile 98, I have to be extra alert not to miss Trinity Road. And by mile 98, I'm not mentally at my best! But I made it to my stopping place without getting lost. I'm a little sad though. 108.8 is the furthest I've ever biked and I don't have the data for it. But here are the first 92 miles:

The map, tracked before the battery death, shows all but my last 16 or so miles, but those 16 miles were perhaps the longest! I love data. I like this tangible evidence of how far I rode, how much the hills took out of my system, how big the hills were. My watch is a tool. It helps me succeed, to know how far I've gone and what's ahead. We all need those kinds of tools.

And, as I thought about on my ride, too many kids don't have those tools for their learning. Good people - like the nonprofits I'm fundraising for - step in to provide them. Now, my watch is a silly thing; I can make do without it. But that's not true when it comes to education. Please support BIKE NC.

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