Wednesday, April 15, 2020


In February, 1995, Greg LeMond came to Boise.

Remember Greg?  He was the first-ever American to win the Tour de France... several years before whats-his-name... the disgraced guy.  LeMond won three times in his career.  I stood in line on a gray winter morning to get an audience with him.  I got a photo and we chatted.  I told him I'd ridden 50,000 miles.  (Cumulative, since I started tracking in 1986.)  His jaw dropped... he interpreted that to mean I'd ridden 50k miles in a year!  I clarified.  He laughed, and gave me a signed poster - one of his moments of glory on the Champs-Élysées, with the Arc de Triomphe in the background.  He wrote on it, "To Steve, keep it up another 50,000! -Greg LeMond."  It's a prized possession, framed along with our photo together.

As it turns out, I did keep it up another 50,000.  On September 1, 2004, I rode my bicycle to the Statehouse and lofted it high above my head, in a lame imitation of Rocky!  Because that was the day I hit 100,000 miles.  My office friends were there to celebrate with me.

In 2004, another 100,000 miles seemed insurmountable.  Like climbing to a high peak, and seeing for the first time, the distant, even-higher mountain range.  Shades of Lewis & Clark!

Well... time marches on, and the miles keep rolling underneath me.

Yesterday, I hit 190,000 miles.  Now that tall range is much nearer to the view.  I should hit that peak sometime in 2022, based on current annual mileages.

(This may seem like a silly diversion to many.  And I'd still be riding, even if I didn't keep track.  However, I'd be lying if I said that "chasing those miles" wasn't a motivation for me.  Frosting on the cake.  I keep daily track in multiples of 5... you know 10 miles, 15 miles, 20, etc.  I put a checkmark next to 15, whether I ride 15.01 miles or 19.99 miles.  So if time isn't a factor, I'll almost always be motivated to hit the next higher number.  The Missus keeps things in perspective.  When I boast, "I've ridden 5000 miles this year!," her reply is "That's nice.")

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