Biketivism – Bikes Are A Force

I’m not an activist. I just ride my bike.
I’m not a world changer. I just ride my bike.
I’m not a superhero. I just ride my bike.

Photo of a cyclist as the sun sets over a wide roadway

But.

Because I ride my bike, I have met people from many different walks of life. I ride with teachers, bankers, bike shop employees, factory custodians, college students, former students, retired engineers, and even the occasional priest. Each, in his or her own way, has taught me about the benefits of surrounding myself with people different from me. I’ve also learned to speak up for those with no voice and to use my vote to make my voice heard.

Because I ride my bike and enjoy the relationships that stem from those early morning coffee rides or evening hammerfests, I’ve found ways to make cycling inclusive. Hosting free bike maintenance clinics for new riders, leading no-drop group rides, or even buying a cup of coffee for the new rider helps our cycling community grow. It’s so easy to forget what it was like starting out, and it takes minimal effort to stop and act. Small gestures add up to effect change well beyond our city, even changing our world.

Photo of three cyclists riding on a country road in Kentucky.

Because I ride my bike and love my city, I hosted our city’s first Cranksgiving this fall. It’s part bike ride, part scavenger hunt, and they’re held all over the country. I had no idea what to expect but was blown away by the generous riders that braved cooler temps to ride and purchase needed items for two local homeless shelters. Despite the lack of bike lanes and bike racks at stores, we traipsed all over our city to purchase food and supplies. As we shopped, riders were excited to be able to serve our community in a creative way. Instead of just picking up a few items on the list, I saw riders going above and beyond what the “race” suggested in order to help even more people. People on bikes helped feed our neediest neighbors.

Because I ride my bike, I gain insight to my personal challenges. I understand what it’s like to struggle on a difficult route or hit new distance PRs. I know that because I ride my bike, I’m stronger.

And because I’m stronger, I am an activist. I am a world changer. I am a superhero (at least in my kids’ eyes) all because I ride my bike.

A bingo style shopping list for Cranksgiving
Paying at a self-checkout machine in a grocery store for Cranskgiving
Bikes lean against a barn in a Kentucky field during a ladies only ride
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Riding a bicycle has changed Jessica's life. The experience has taught her to be humble in slow-speed falls, be happy for the latest QOM, and to be thankful for the community she has found. Triathlon was Jessica's "gateway drug" into cycling. She grew to love the long easy rides as well as the "Monday Night Worlds" rides. This year, instead of Ironman training, she is helping build and support her city's first all-female cycling club and she is loving the challenge. Jessica has two active kids and an exceedingly patient fiance who hasn't disowned her (yet) for the bike in the living room. The cat doesn't seem to mind.

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One thought on “Biketivism – Bikes Are A Force

  1. Good stuff right here! It’s those little choices that have the greatest impact. The no drop rides / cup of coffee gift is the most affective one-two punch ever! Keep it up!

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