My Dad, The Cyclopath


Not my dad’s bike, but a great shot from!


“No falls, flats, or fangs!”

That’s what my dad says when he returns from a successful bicycle ride.

He’s in his 70s. He’s been bicycling on the weekends since I was in high school. Now retired, he bicycles outside on every good day. He finally decided to stop bicycling for the year in December.

In fact, I asked him how many miles he’d clocked just outside in 2015, and he somberly replied, “2,500.” He’d missed his goal of 3,000.

But he blamed the weather for that.

He usually brings his pipe along. One of his bicycling jerseys looks like a tuxedo. “I like to look nice,” he says.

I’m not kidding about this

On not-so-good days, he’ll cycle indoors on an equally retired bike.  He has a TV, but prefers to face the picture window instead so he can imagine he’s outside.

“I also turn on the football game and watch the reflection in the window. I like seeing millionaires busting into each other,” he says.

He props a word search book on the handlebars and plays songs like The Freckle Song and Copycat to pass the time. (And let’s not forget Tiger Haynes, but that’s a whole ‘nother post right there.)

“Otherwise it gets boring, and who wants to exercise when it’s boring?” he says.

His total mileage for 2015 was 6,000 miles.

All these things may go into why he calls himself a Cyclopath.

But this post is really about advice, so…

In addition to those three Fs up at the top–no falls, flats, or fangs–my dad has another three Fs of bicycling that you can apply to just about anything else.

Three Fs to Remember:

It’s NOT about how FAST you go.

It’s NOT about how FAR you go.

It IS about how FREQUENTLY you do it!

Here’s another way to look at it:

You know what they say about sitting too much: It can kill you! Yikes!

I suppose something has to, but all the same, I try to remember to get up and move around, even if it’s only for a little bit at a time.

Remember that all big things are made up of little things.

This means making your milestones achievable so you won’t wear yourself out before you’ve even reached your goal.

Plus, you’re more likely to miss really awesome things along the way that might have made a difference to your whole perspective.

And don’t forget, bicycle or not, 10 miles one way is another 10 miles back!

One last bit of dad-wisdom

This is what I hear when I’m dithering about hopping on my own bicycle:

“Go because you want to, not because you have to!”

And then I do.


See, I wasn’t kidding!

What gets you up & going?


Originally posted on LinkedIn.

One thought on “My Dad, The Cyclopath

  1. Pingback: It’s How We Roll: Bicycling, Charity, and Happy Kids | Turn the page

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