While the Bike Fed’s “Winter Bike/Walk Challenge” is over, you don’t have to be a ground hog to know winter is going to be around for a while longer. We started the Winter Challenge this year to encourage more people to embrace winter and get out and ride. If you live in Wisconsin, you either have to hibernate or embrace winter.
This first challenge ended with 124 people logging 5,252 miles and burning 258, 141 calories. That’s about the equivalent of those 124 people doing a relay race across the United States and back in a week! David Hoffman logged the most miles with 246 miles. Kiestin Kloeckner, a Bike Fed Board Member, lead the women with 148 miles! Nice job both of you.
The friendly competition was fun, but the challenge is about encouraging everyone to try riding more. As promised, anyone who logged miles was entered in a random drawing for prizes. We will be contacting the winners, Tara and David, to get them their complimentary copies of the Bike Fed’s coffee table book “Endure,” the ultimate photographic tome to bike winter:
Women: Tara Van Rose, 16.2 miles
Men: David Hoffman, who coincidentally was the overall Challenge leader, logging 246 miles!
I heard from some people that they found the Endomondo website difficult to use. In an effort to more people to join the National Bike Challenge, Kimberly-Clark, the primary sponsor, is working with the League of American Bicyclists to build a simpler, easier to use website. Click on the image below for more information and for early registration. In case you missed it, Rob Gusky, Kimberly-Clark’s “bicycle ambassador” gave a nice interview about riding through winter on the Joy Cardin Show. You can listen to that here.
Congratulations to the winners and everyone who logged miles in this little winter warm-up to the bigger spring bike challenge. I have pasted the top mileage leaders below. If you click on the image, you can see everyone at the Endomondo site. I had a great time with this Challenge, and we hope to get 12,000 people to sign up for the National Bike Challenge this spring. Kimberly-Clark is the primary sponsor, and they have been working with the League of American Bicyclists to improve the website and make it even easier to log your miles with other smartphone apps such as Map My Ride and Moves.
Significantly more men than women logged miles in our Winter Bike Challenge. For some reason, Wisconsin always ranks very low in the percentage of women who ride bikes for transportation. We have comparable numbers to other states for recreational cycling, but Women in Wisconsin don’t seem to ride to work or the store as often as women in other states. Even Minnesota and Illinois have higher numbers. I hope we can change that.
Even though our challenge is over, I encourage you to give winter riding a try. While people all around me are complaining about our cold, snowy winter, those who I have been riding with have been loving it. I have been having a blast riding to work, and riding for fun with my friends on weekends. I have been wanting to ride down the Milwaukee River for years, and now I can say I have done it! Whether you ride for transportation or just for fun, riding in the winter is easier than you think. Most who have not tried it think it must be cold, but actually you have to dress pretty light so you don’t overheat and sweat too much!
To inspire you, I have created a gallery of bike winter images on the Bike Fed’s Photoshelter site. Click the image below to look through all the chilly two-wheeled fun.