As I edit my on-line book, "How to Bike America", in tightening up the following excerpt, I realized that it deserves to be shared with a larger audience:
Safety In Traffic
If cars worry you, any ride you do across the US will not be an escape from them. Learn to love them. Learn to love being that part of traffic that is not being slowed down by the gridlocked reality of modern day driving.
Make your ride a moving meditation, where like the tiger in the jungle, you are comfortably aware of all that is taking place all around you. For such an awareness to best be practiced, when in traffic, pretend that you are having a conversation in your highest unseen, unheard mind with all of the highest such selves of everyone else with whom you share this part of the road. Pretend that you are all mindful of one another. Trust that that person in the car next to, ahead of and behind you knows you are there and that you anticipate his or her every move and vica versa. Make it a dance of which you are the grand choreographer.
Whenever what a car ahead, behind or next to you does or may do to threaten your path, try to establish a telepathic conversation with its driver. Many long time cyclists that I know make this game of make believe a part of the sixth sense they have developed for the road. Many are not even conscious of the fact that they are doing so, but when asked, they will realize that this technique has subconsciously slipped into their arsenal of safety gear for quite some time. Even as a game of make believe, it still gives one a sense of security, however real or imagined it may happen to be.
Something else that has helped me over the years is to see my path as filled with light even before I embark upon it. Doing so, knowing where I am going, establishing purpose for my travels beforehand adds to my feeling of confidence. This also is a communication that other souls (I base this on the assumption that we are all spirits or unseen energy moving about in physical bodies) pick up on in their ability to predict my actions on the human level as they subconsciously listen to the dictates of the spiritual level that exists far beyond this one.
When your miles find you riding in the dark, imagine that you are a ball of blinding light going down the road. Whenever you hear a car approach, turn this awareness up to make yourself stand out even more. In addition to your bike lighting and any reflective gear you may happen to be running, you will begin to develop the sense that this is helping you to be seen. It is this confidence that goes out into the universe and additionally communicates to all of the other spiritual beings that are having the same human experience with you that you demand to be seen and made exception for.
For the record, if you are a bike shop, here is a page you will want to bookmark for your customers planning a long distance tour next summer. It will help them decide between trailers and panniers:
If you are a cyclist planning multi-day bike tour for next season, do save this url and know also that this is just one of 14 chapters from our on-line book “How to Bike America” found at:
Table of Contents for:
“How to Bike America
Or do any multi-day bike tour"
Why TransAm #2
TransAm Mindset #3
Pre-Ride Eating #4
Deprivation Training #5
The Great Pannier -Trailer Debate #6
Recumbent or Upright? #7
Fall TransAm Training #8
Winter Training #9
The Performance Box #10
(Using it to commit, achieve, and break free from your ties)
TransAm Road Food: How, What, Where, When #11
The Psychology of Now #12
From "How to Move Mountains, with Love"
Summer Training #13
Still Undecided? #14
How to Break Free from the Ties that Bind, Part One #15
Meditation, Visualization, Writing a Proposal for your Employer
How to Break Free from the Ties that Bind, Part Two #16
Magnetism, the Philosophy of 2nd Hand and the War Chest you will Need
- The Gear you will Need
- The Attitude you will Need
- Awake Again by Martin Krieg
- Beyond Backpacking, Guide to Lightweight Hiking by Ray Jardines
- BikePacking by Andrew Morton
-"How to Manifest your Destiny" by Wayne Dyer
According to a recent study done by the Rand Corporation, if U live in a city, you will have much better health than someone living in the suburbs. This is largely so because, in most of America's less densely populated areas, schools and homes and shopping services are separated by roads that are not walkable or are unsafe for cycling. The study: