30 Days of Winter Biking: January 2019

January 2018, I decided to try a self-challenge of biking 30 days in the month. I was aiming for 31 but was out of town for 3 days and couldn’t find a bicycle on that middle day. Still, I biked over 400 miles, lost 8 pounds, and gained a new sense of appreciation of winter and a proud sense of determination that kept me biking nearly 3,000 miles the rest of the year. I was taking a personal spin (see what I did there?) of the internationally-famous annual April “30 days of biking” challenge.

I’m going to do it again, aiming for 31 days, though I won’t beat myself up (like I did before) it I don’t bike every day. Who’s with me? You can bike indoors or out, and bike as little or as much as you want. It’s a self-challenge, so you don’t need to document the miles unless you want to. I log my miles manually through the Love to Ride website, the org that hosts the national bike challenges.

I will post on social media every day I bike, keeping myself honest and happy about my daily bike adventures, and will use the #30daysofbiking hashtag.

Winter biking is NOT easy. It takes time, patience, money, layers, cold noses, frozen eye lashes, and at least for me, a stubborn streak. But the benefits are a healthier, happier me and you.

Start 2019 on a bike and enjoy the ride!

Snow, ice, beauty, happy.

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10 Responses to 30 Days of Winter Biking: January 2019

  1. sheldon mains December 27, 2018 at 8:53 pm #

    I’m thinking about taking your challenge.

    • Melissa Wenzel
      Melissa Wenzel December 28, 2018 at 9:41 am #

      I really hope you do! It’s a tough month, but it’s a judgment-free challenge where you can do as much or as little as you want, indoors or out. It’s about pushing yourself a bit more during the time of the year that’s not easy for many to embrace outside. It’s not easy for me, to be absolutely honest.

      • Sheldon Mains January 4, 2019 at 7:45 pm #

        made it 4 days so far– plan to keep it up

  2. Maria Wardoku December 28, 2018 at 4:33 pm #

    I love this! Biking makes winter more fun 🙂

    • Melissa Wenzel
      Melissa Wenzel December 29, 2018 at 7:53 pm #

      You know, it really does for me. I have 2 Monkey Lights on my bike and a better head lamp, so I actually look forward to biking in the dark. I’m getting more used to ice and snow too. Just like a car, go slow in winter conditions….

      (-:

  3. Jenny Werness
    Jenny Werness December 30, 2018 at 2:10 pm #

    I love winter biking! This year I was out of town on a work trip for most of January, so I was extra happy to see all your winter biking updates. This year I’m in for 30 days of winter biking. Hopefully I’ll see you on our winter routes!

    • Melissa Wenzel
      Melissa Wenzel December 31, 2018 at 8:25 am #

      Awesome Jenny!! I’m going to try to stick with my “normal” work schedule (instead of working from home for an hour and biking into work ~8:15-9am) so our paths may not cross. But I know you bike more than I do, any day, any time of the year, so I’ll think of you on the extra cold and/or snowy days!!

  4. James Frese January 1, 2019 at 10:45 pm #

    I’m in! Just bought a fat-tire bike last weekend, and the timing was perfect for all the bumpy, rutted ice. Winter is way more tolerable when I am motivated to layer up and head outside!

  5. Andrew Evans January 2, 2019 at 2:28 pm #

    I did this when I first moved to town in Stevens Square Mpls, and worked downtown. Was actually easier to get around than with a car, and everything I needed was within a few miles – and I’d go on grocery runs when I was driving to places anyway. However, this was before bike trails, fat tires, so some of the winter riding was going slower on sidewalks.

    I’d do it again, but I live in North Mpls now, and the traffic here is just terrible. Maybe it’s a part of growing older, but I think a lot of my motorcycle and bike days are behind me. It wouldn’t be much fun to get rear-ended, turned into, or any other unwanted contact with cars. My LCL sprain was bad enough, I would hate to have something happen that would take me off my feet longer than a week.

  6. Peter January 11, 2019 at 1:06 am #

    Good on you! I started with the first 30 Days of Biking, didn’t make it, tired again, didn’t make it, tried again (repeat many times) and eventually made 100 days in a row. I’ve blown it and restarted since then, too. I don’t get in as much distance as you, but just getting on the bike and riding every day regardless of the distance has been transformative for me.
    Have fun! Keep the rubber side down!

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