4,000 for 40 – Introduction

January 1, 2016

The doctor is staring at the computer screen examining the blood test results. She smiles, then says, “I’ll take your blood pressure now, too.”

The cuff inflates and then squeezes my arm while the doctor makes small talk about immigrating to Australia for love. We have that in common.

The cuff loosens and the doctor removes it. She smiles again. It is wonderful to hear her say, “These results are all excellent….”

What is not so wonderful to hear is when she completes the statement with: “… for your age.”


How did I get so old that medical staff are now using the term “for your age” when discussing medical test results?

She may have said some other things, but I did not hear them. I was reeling from being told I am old.

I don’t feel old. Well, okay, yes, sometimes I do. My fingers do especially.

I don’t act old. Well, okay, yes, I know I’m not invincible anymore and don’t act like I am. I can’t remember the last time I was drunk… or even drank more than one standard drink in a sitting.

Sigh… crap, I am getting old. Damn it, I am middle-aged.

I turn 40 this year. Cough, cough! Oh my god, how did that happen?

It is a milestone. It should be celebrated or fought or at least acknowledged.

So, me being me, I’ve decided that I’m going to set a goal. I have always been driven by goals. I’m going to do something that will remind me of how freakin’ old I am just about every day. Because I’m going to have to work just about every day to get the goal done.

This year I’m going to do 4,000 for 40.

Yes, I’m going to ride 4,000 miles on the bike with 4,000 kilometres within that 4,000 miles (2485 miles) being loaded weekend rides. 4,000 miles may not seem like much to you, but that pretty much means you have to ride 12 miles every single day for the entire year. That’s an hour every day. EVERY DAY. That’s tough when it’s hotter than Hades in January, and the only good riding time coincides with the only good sleeping time. That’s tough in July, when it’s dark when you go to work and dark when you get home. That’s tough when you tend to be a wee bit lazy like me. That’s tough when you have just signed up for three online courses that will take up a lot of free time in the first half of the year.

But you know what? I like it when it’s tough. I thrive on challenge. So let’s do this! Somehow. Some way. Because I think it’s a pretty decent goal… for someone my age.

Em. 1980. Age 4. I’m not sure how I got to be age 4 X 10 when I can still clearly remember what it felt like to put on these skates and cruise down the driveway.
Em. 2015. Age 39. This is just before the beginning of the end. Please note the white safety paint on the steps and the grab bar. OLD.

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