Thursday, October 28, 2010

A lot of donuts

Another fun bit of information gathered from our The Mibus Family 30 Days of Biking Challenge has to do with donuts.

Dailymile keeps track of fun things besides milage like the number of gallons a biker saves by biking, the number of pounds lost and the number of TVs powered for the miles you bike. The most fun statistic they offer, I think, shows how many donuts a person could have eaten calorie free, essentially, because of the calories burned by riding bike. 
Again, my numbers aren’t 100% accurate here because Dailymile doesn’t figure this out per month. But, based on the information I had I did some algebra to solve for X/number of donuts (see, math really does come in handy in real life!) and came up with the whopping number of 196 donuts!
That’s a lot of donuts for one family! Best thing is we didn’t actually eat any donuts during our 30 Days of Biking. Instead, we burned a ton of calories and got in better shape. Not that the kids needed to get into shape. They are already fit. Owen is pretty fit, too, though he has noticed he’s in better shape than before (and I noticed, too).
As for me, I’m probably the least lean member of my family but I’m happy to report that a lot of my clothes are now too big.
Now I’m not a fan of shopping for clothes. Really. I’m a woman who doesn’t like shopping. Clothes shopping stresses me out. Shopping at outlet malls gives me a headache.
But I do like shopping for bicycling clothes.
And I could use a new, slightly smaller, pair of bike shorts.
And, since I started riding I’ve somehow gotten on the mailing list for that cool shop for fit women - Title Nine, that has all these real-life models in their catalog and on the website who are really fit. And I really would like a skirt I saw in the Title Nine catalog and some of their other cool fit-woman clothes. 
Yes I know I’m not as fit as the Title Nine women.
But who cares?
I’m on my way.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

58 Hours of Fun

Last time I wrote I promised I would give you the stats on our Family 30 Days of Biking Challenge. Well, I’m a little slow in getting this to you but I finally have it done!
One of the reasons for the delay is that I went to tally up our total miles and realized that we hadn’t kept up Rose’s Dailymile biking log. Rose almost always rode with either me or Owen so I recreated Rose’s rides based on our milage logs. Then I realized we didn’t have Ryan log his miles in any formal fashion at all. So, since he usually rode with Rose, I based his milage on hers. Our final numbers for the kids aren’t going to be 100% accurate but they are pretty close. 
The process of logging all of Rose’s miles was cumbersome to say the least but I’m glad I got it done. It was kind of fun, too, to look back and read some of the comments we wrote along with our entries. To remember that our little family of four set out to accomplished a goal that seemed impossible at the start. That we overcame some obstacles and frustrations. That we spent hours together as a family. That we had a lot of fun. That we did, indeed, ride our bikes every single day for 30 days. 
So, without further ado, here are the numbers. Drumroll please.....
During the 30 Days of Biking Challenge in September 2010 Rose rode 62 miles, Ryan rode 62 miles, Owen rode 195 miles and I rode 202 miles.
Total number of miles biked by The Mibus Family during 30 Days of Biking - 521!!! 

Even using a conservative average speed of 9 miles per hour, the four of us collectively spent 58 hours riding our bikes in September.
58 hours! Wow!
That’s 58 hours NOT spent sitting still in front of the TV. 
That’s 58 hours of family time that was almost entirely stress free.
That’s 58 hours of fresh air.
That’s 58 hours of exercise.
That’s 58 hours of Mibus Family Fun!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Our Family's Grand Adventure

We've had perfect weather for riding here in Minnesota. It was in the 80s today which is very strange for October but also very nice. September was more tumultuous - some cold, lots of rain, flooding. But September was the month for the second 30 Days of Biking challenge of 2010 so even though the weather was not always nice, hundreds of people in Minnesota and around the world took part in the biking challenge and ventured out every day to ride their bikes.

You may remember that my whole family decided to do the 30 Days of Riding challenge. Guess what? We did it!! We actually rode our bikes every single day in September. We logged hundreds of miles (I'll tally them up at some point and share them with you) and we spent hours together riding and talking and having fun as a family. We accomplished something together that will be part of our lives forever. Something we'll never forget.

For our final day of the challenge Rose decided we should ride a bike path in New Prague, a town near our home, and then have dinner at our favorite restaurant, The Fishtail Grill. A pleasant ride followed by a celebratory dinner, I figured, would be a great way to finish 30 Days of Biking. Perfect, in fact. And I planned to take the perfect picture of our biking family to document the occasion. How wonderful we would look, I thought. We'd all be smiling because we biked for 30 days in a row. We'd be standing next to our bikes. Perhaps the sun would be setting behind us, the lovely light framing us in an ethereal glow.

Ryan enjoying chicken at our favorite restaurant - The Fishtail Grill in New Prague.

We hauled our bikes to New Prague and were all pretty excited as we set out on the path. The path followed a stream and we saw marshland, birds, a couple of ponds. Rose and I were riding ahead of Owen and Ryan. We were laughing, having fun. And then, all of a sudden, Rose lost control of her bike and crashed. Looking back, we're not sure what happened. Rose thinks she was up and out of her saddle and went to sit down, missed the seat and lost control. Whatever the cause, I watched Rose wobble back and forth, back and forth and tip over.

It's an awful feeling to see your kid lying under her bike. Totally still. Not saying a word.

But, thankfully, she moved and said, "Mom. I'm okay. I'm okay." A mantra she repeated again and again as I helped her up and hugged her. "I'm okay. I'm okay." Rose kept saying, probably trying to convince herself that she was. But it was obvious to me that she really was not.

Rose had a badly scraped knee and elbow, was scared and hurting pretty bad. And when your kid is scared and hurting even a little boo-boo is too much. You want to save them from harm. But you can't.

So you do the best you can do when accidents happen. I found band-aids in my bike bag. I cleaned Rose up as best I could. Bandaged her knee and elbow. Told her all the while that she was very brave. That she would be just fine. That things would be okay.

And they were.

We slowly rode back to our van. Rose was a little scared and sore but she was a trooper and rode back without complaint. We figured Rose would want to go home but she still wanted to go out to eat. So we did. And though we were all kind of shaken we were able to have a nice dinner. We joked a bit about Rose having her first "road rash." Told her she was tough and brave. And we took pictures of us smiling at dinner. Of Rose's elbow and knee. And after dinner we headed home.

Here we are - Smiling at Dinner

I had planned for an exciting end to 30 Days of Biking. Of pictures and yells of "We did it!" in celebration. Hmmm, sometimes things don't go according to plan.

But that's okay. Kids fall off of bikes. Grown-ups even take a tumble from time to time. I suppose we could just decide not to ride and remove the risk of falling off, of getting hurt. But if we removed all risk from our lives I don't think we'd have much fun. Sitting around doing nothing in the effort to keep our lives risk-free isn't much of a life at all.

I like the quote by Helen Keller, "Life is either a grand adventure or nothing." I like this view on life and want to live my life in such a way that I view each day, each experience, as wonderful, as an adventure to be met with gusto.

Rose's Road Rash

I think the kids will agree with me. After all, they wanted to take part in the 30 Days of Biking adventure and they set out each day to ride and meet their goal. And their list of things they want to do is full of adventures and challenges - they want to go rock climbing, fly hot air balloons and gliders, skydive, travel, ride horses, snorkel, ride bikes through Italy...their list goes on and on and on.

Hmm, maybe we have a family motto now, one that fits for 30 Days of Biking or for when we try something else that's new. One that even fits when we something more ordinary, like eating dinner as a family, walking the dog, or hanging out with friends. Life - our family's Grand Adventure.

I like that.