Just wanted to share, do you or have you ridden outside without your computer/phone… to track? For me, it was a thing of pure beauty, after covid had me down for almost 6 weeks now had done some easy rides, but the day was so nice and family away I decided to take the bike out instead of the trainer. as said above this meant my Garmin had not been charged! so I just had my phone to record the activity in my jersey pocket. So I rode about 14km and just fell again in love with my road bike the feeling on the downhills, also the climbing, it really gave me the wings to keep it up (i should say legs actually). And of course, since am recovering in terms of performance it was not my best but in terms of sensation and excitement, it has really been long-time since I last felt like this on a bike ride! Would recommend to others from time to time just to ride for fun and no numbers! other opinions? experiences someone would like to share?
Every time I ride outside is like this. I train indoors and ride outside for fun. I record the activity but never look at the numbers until afterwards, if at all.
Try not even taking the phone [sacrilege] AND not tracking the activity.
I actually get goose bumps as I withdraw from such compulsion…!!
I started riding with a clean cockpit a couple of years ago and it’s beautiful. The exception is vacations or very long rides, when I need navigation.
For about two years I used breadcrumb navigation on my sports watch for that. Works pretty well, except for long fast descents when you miss a turn and find out a couple of km later at the bottom. Happened to me in the Pyrenees.
PS: related to that, abandoning Strava was the best thing I’ve ever done for enjoying cycling.
I would always take a phone, for emergencies. Nothing to do with numbers.
The only thing I ever look at after a ride is the route, and I would miss that. Even in home territory, sometimes there’s a weird detour that takes you places you’ve never been before, or when I’m on a gravel bike now I discover and explore paths I couldn’t use before. That’s fun to check out afterwards. There’s a small forest in the neighbourhood that has a mind bending maze of paths that I still haven’t memorised entirely, always chuckle when I look at those rides later.
This reminds me of my rule for navigating: when in doubt, take the turn that goes up.
Kids these days… I started road riding ~1970 so have many fond memories of riding without cycling computers and cell phones. It was a cue sheet and maybe section cut out of free gas station road maps or a hand drawn map, and some change for a pay phone. If it was gonna get dark, be sure the bottle generator was working. The added drag helped enforce not out-riding the feeble headlight. Now, the most important pre-ride prep is ensuring my bike computer, phone, and lights are adequately charged.
That’s a good rule. I was descending on a main road, though, and it wasn’t an intersection but just a narrow street on the left, leading to a village. Its presence didn’t even register on the way down.
I have never had a bike computer. All I ever ride with outside is a garmin watch that records the ride. The only data points I have programmed to see on the watch are speed and distance, which I rarely look at.
For me, riding outside is a something to be enjoyed. Yes I do some hard workouts, but there is something special about enjoying the outdoors, pushing up the hills and gliding down the descents. Something you just can’t get indoors.
So yeah @JC2020, I am with you.
Been riding this way for 2yrs now, so much better I do carry a phone in jersey for Strava.
Once i got Strava to stop shutting down, it’s been a god send. As soon as I figure out how to get Garmin Connect to count the hikes I take, It’s going to be all good. Phone in pocket with no sounds and away we go.
Without route guidance I’d end up on a motorway or other lethal road here in the UK. Definitely need that. Don’t care for the numbers during the ride, but kinda like reviewing it after.
I dumped my bike computer years ago. It made outdoor riding lots more relaxing and enjoyable for me. My brain and legs are my sensors and I don’t focus on all the data that used to drive me crazy.
It’s interesting to see how many people ride without Strava/numbers. It never occurred to me to do that, since I started riding well into my ‘middle’ years, to get fit and delay aging. It has all been about improving average speed, power, the next FTP text. I have noticed that sometimes the outdoor ride feels good but then I look at the numbers and my average speed is below what I expected and I am disappointed in myself, when there is really no benefit from the sense of disappointment. Harm if anything. The main thing is that I rode and actually felt good about the ride until I checked the numbers… food for thought!!
Indoors yes it’s all numbers as I’m there for a purpose. Outdoors I don’t care as I’m more interested in soaking up where I’m riding, taking in the Lakeland Passes etc and just feeling great riding my bike. I see on Strava people obsessing about avg speeds, usually after a fast group ride……who cares?
Thanks everyone for the replies! Nice to see I’m not the only one who appreciates a good ride without always “being attached to numbers”, they’ve been interesting reads!
When I ride outdoors, I have my computer with me just to record the distance, the time of the day and the heart rate zones. Otherwise, I wouldn’t really be bothered to look at the power figures or average speed or even ride to beat the KOM.
Somedays I wish my indoor trainer would glide….!!!