The Physical Actvity Thread

I‘ve been thinking for a while about making a thread like this since we have a few skateboarders here, and at least one rollerskater and avid cyclist each, and some folks here run and who knows what else. I was going to keep it to wheelie sports but thought I’d broaden the scope to just any solo physical activity you get out there and do.

E-bikes and boosted boards are welcome, as long as you can push or pedal it when the battery's dead. Kick scooters are absolutely welcome!! This is a no scooter hate zone, unless we are talking about those electric scooters currently cluttering sidewalks across at least my continent and confounding a problem better solved by getting cheap refurbished bikes into people's hands.

I rollerblade! Yes Jet Set Radio made me want to take it up. No I am no good at grinding. I mostly skate around town on one of my big wheel setups. Every year from May to October they close the parkways in my city off to car traffic and allow pedestrians, cyclists etc. to use them for most of the day on weekends. Today was some dumb Canadian holiday, so this morning I went for a half marathon on my triskates.


Gearhead stuff:


  • - 2017 Seba FR1 boots with the abrasive pads and 45° straps removed, waxed referee laces
  • - Intuition liners from a pair of FR1 Deluxes
  • - Seba 310 frames, 248mm wheelbase
  • - 110mm/86A Undercover Team blanks
  • - Twincam Rustproof bearings

  • It's a little over 21km to this particular bench in the east end of town. I had a headwind today and it took me \~1h25m30 to get there. In perfect conditions I can get it under 1h15. I thought I'd skate home and with the sudden tailwind I was **flying** until I got to a long hill and my legs still hurt from the effort it took to get up it. I off and on skated/walked from there until I could catch a bus lol. I am going to do this again every dry weekend until they reopen the parkways.

    I also longboard sometimes. I have a dancer I like cruising around on because that's about all I can do with it. I enjoy it a lot, though. While blading makes me feel energetic and alive, riding my board is more relaxed and meditative for me. I need new skate shoes but finding the right kind for wide feet has been difficult.

    I used to have a bike, but haven't owned one in almost a decade. Biking was my first love: I cycled a whole lot for about 26 years straight. I would go out for hours without a patch kit and sometimes without anything to drink and roam the other small neighbouring farm towns where I grew up. My last bike was a 1970s orange Peugeot racer that I would take where it really wasn't supposed to go—on gravel and dirt roads, and that earned me a lot of pinch flats and sore palms. Now I browse [/r/xbiking]( frequently with lust in my eyes thinking about the hybrid adventure build I might one day put together.

    And I would be running but I'm rehabbing a forefoot injury for the time being. One time I ran 30km in a week. I'd love to return to it sometime as it felt great to just focus on my breath and watch the world around me scroll past.

    Tell me about the stuff you get up to!!

    I am one of said skateboaders! I almost got into rollerblading because I too adore Jet Set Radio so much, but ultimately went with skateboarding because I watched Sk8 the Infinity and it‘s different take on perfectionism and its presentation that skateboarding should be a place where you can just focus on having fun and being yourself meant the world to me as someone who’s dealt with a lot of mental health stuff related to exercise, perfectionism in athletics, and body image. I wrote a gigantic column in detail about what Sk8 the Infinity meant to me and how skateboarding has really changed me life I‘m excited to publish once I finish up the first few columns of the sort of backlog I want to have ready before I publish stuff on the blog I wanna start up. I go to the skatepark almost every day and as someone who has had social anxiety my entire life and recently learned I am likely autistic, I’ve always had trouble socially and everyone I've met at that skatepark has been absolutely wonderful people and I think I might actually be making friends for the first time in years.

    Here is my board. I covered it in a million stickers. This was when it was new and it is incredibly beat up many months later from constant use.


    Nice thread.

    I bike pretty much every day to work, I‘ve even got a set up for when it’s raining (raincoat & change of clothes).

    I got kinda into biking over summer when I wasn‘t working and would do 3-4 20+km rides a week. My bike is an old Giant, my dad had it for when he did triathlons in the 80s/90s.

    (It’s way too big for me, lol)

    I also have roller skates but havent used them in a long time. I was inspired by the movie Hackers instead of JSR. Where I live (on top of a hill in a city) isn't great for roller skating and I never really learnt how to t-stop.

    I also also have an e-sk8. This one i really like, I was always pretty scared of losing control on long boards when going down hills so it's really nice being able to brake. It doesnt have a masive range but its fun to cruise around on during the weekend, It's an evolve stoke with cloud wheels, I got it all second hand and only needed to replace the belts.
    [IMG width=600][/IMG]

    I used to use strava a lot too for my rides and running, but it's really been too long. Hopefully someone in this thread will inspire me to get back out there.

    @“HeavenlyHalberd”#p116944 wow, now that‘s how you sticker bomb. I also have a complicated relationship with exercise and my own issues with perfectionism. I’ve many times relied on physical activity to lift my mood, so when an injury invariably happens and I need to take time off it can blindside me. I‘ve once or twice jumped to the conclusion that it was the solution to a big problem facing me when at best it was just a piece of a puzzle, and it’s still kind of hard to balance goals I set for myself with just having fun. I'd be excited to read your column when you get done with it!

    @"beets"#p116986 that's a really pretty frame!! At least you'll never need to readjust your seatpost lol.

    I was poking around a neighbourhood I'm really not familiar with on my way back yesterday, and my city is pretty hilly overall. Normally I can cancel a descent if I'm not feeling safe about it but I got to this intersection that was a little busy, unfamiliar, with a blind corner to a narrow sidewalk *and* I was tired and my skates were starting to hurt. So I just took them off there and walked down. Skates: fun but inconvenient.

    Garmin doesn't have an activity for inlines so I keep telling myself to just track it as a bike ride but I still never do it.

    It‘s me I’m the road cyclist.

    I bought a Kona Zing (aluminum frame, steel fork, 105 group) in 2011 and put approximately 9k miles on it before upgrading it last year. I had a like-new Bianchi Infinito CV (full carbon frame, carbon zipp 303 wheels, and 11-speed Shimano DI2 electronic shifting) kinda fall into my lap last year and... it' so much damn fun! I'm a climber and I probably knocked 10% off my times on my various 10-15 minute climbs I do around town. I put over 2000 miles on it last year alone including a 100 mile century ride.

    COVID/work from home has been a huge boon to my riding because now I can go cycling outside at lunch (when it's dry) instead of sitting in the company gym on the dumpy bikes. Since 2020, I've ridden over 2000 miles outside alone each year. That's not including the time I spend on the trainer in the garage during the rainy season.

    The American biking industry does a huge disservice to future cyclists when they are kids by selling their parents mt. bikes with full suspensions that are heavier than they are instead of light and fast road bikes. Especially since Mt. bikes with huge fat tires are not comfortable or easy to ride on pavement. This turns biking into yet another event that you have to drive somewhere to do instead of just putting on your sweet sunglasses and pedaling out of your driveway.

    I roller skate, but rarely solo (I play roller derby). I do park skate and trail skate during summer, the only reasonable time of year to do such a thing.

    Bicycling, however, is my one true love. I am happiest when on a bike. I have my Dad's old baiancci Eros, manufactured the same year I was born. A few years back she was totally stripped of most her parts when I left her locked up downtown all day (not even overnight!) I spent years saving up enough money to get her working again. I could've bought a nice refurbished bike, but she's too special for me to abandon like that. I want to keep her forever.

    I recently got an absurdly good deal on a Rad Power ebike for commuting purposes. This is not something I can normally afford to buy, it'd take so long to save up. It's so fun! The place where I live is very hilly so long commutes aren't very feasible if I want to have any kind of energy when I get to the place. And I'm in decent shape! The ebike makes my hour commute to school possible every day if I want to, which rules. I love being out in the world, really IN it you know?

    @“antillese”#p117012 why choose between extremes? Maybe it makes sense to have the skinniest road bike in a city with a warm climate but out in the country after winter destroyed what‘d been paved I was dying for knobbier tires, and where I grew up there was a forest across the street that would lead to a fitness trail on a former railroad that was only partially paved and which lead to all-gravel roads pockmarked with potholes and just straight up grassy fields that were a lot of fun with zero barriers on a pre-suspension mountain bike. I agree that big heavy tricked out mtbs in places nowhere near the terrain they’re designed for is stupid, and probably targeted at really clueless middle class parents.

    I for some reason impulsively bought a shitty cruiser off a friend of a friend for $30 when I moved here that had suspension in the saddle post. I'd never ridden a bike with suspension before and I don't think I ever will again (unless I got into actual mountain biking maybe).

    While I think it can make a lot of sense to get a road bike specifically where some people live and everyone should learn how to ride a bike, there's this longboarding blog called [Quick Quiver]( where the writer argues that skateboarding is the best way to get around a city, and I think that's also partially true. I think they're both really handy skills I wish I had at my disposal in equal measure. There are like middle-distance trips sometimes where I feel bummed about walking but the thought of putting on my triskates is too much where I wish I had the confidence to just get to where I need to go on my longboard instead.

    @"RubySunrise"#p117022 this is one of the reasons I kinda stopped biking when I moved to a city lol. No one can/wants to steal my blades!! I think you made the right call rebuilding if you still had a nice frame left. Did they really steal everything but the frame?

    Also that sucks a lot and I'm actually really terrified of bike theft but I'm glad you managed to salvage the most important parts!

    @“connrrr”#p117111 maybe I exaggerated. They stole both wheels and broke some of the more important bits in the process. When I got her repaired, I had to get new derailleurs, chain, seat post, saddle, grip tape, breaks and break lines… as well as wheels and tires, of course.

    I like running. I just do it for fun and cardio these days, but I used to be more serious about in college and for a little while after. Don‘t know what to say about gear other than after years of wearing out the front mesh on different brands of shoes, I’ve been going strong with Altras because they have a large enough toe box (I have big ape feet).

    I also enjoy backcountry hiking. Have walked the majority of Michigan and large parts of Wisconsin and Minnesota + section hikes out west and in Canada. Never going to complete any of the big ticket thru hikes bc I haven't been in a position where I can take 3-5 months off of work lol. But I get out for a week or two which is a decent stretch. Doubt anyone is interested in gear talk but I would recommend MI-based Superior Wilderness Designs for packs. For shelter, I really like my Tarptent.

    I ride a bike to work when the weather's reasonable. I have an old steel frame Peugeot Bordeaux I've worked on here and there and have looking not bad. Can't compete with @"antillese"#59 in technical specs, but I like how stable the steel frame is and it's not all that heavy imo. Plus they made a million of them so replacement parts are easy to source. I would recommend a Peugeot steel frame bike to anyone looking to spend like $200-$300. Never pulled the trigger on a Waterford and now they're closing up shop, bummer!

    I was a distance runner all through the 2000‘s, and I did a bunch of half and full marathons up through something like 2012, to the point where my partner and I would travel to run a race and then stagger around sightseeing for a few days afterward. I still run some, but it’s for much shorter distances, and in much of the year it‘s treadmill running. I mostly made the transition to shorter distances because I had a series of cascading injuries that only ever resolved for me when I stopped doing long distances (and the advent of Smoke Season in the PNW in the mid-2010’s effectively would have ended long runs for me anyway). I‘ve done a bunch of active stuff after that, but I’m still trying to figure out what will me my new reliable solo activity! I‘ve been thinking of both skating (roller and ice, given where I live) and cycling. Because I was a frail and sickly Dickensian child, I didn’t learn to ride a bike until I was in my 20‘s, and as a result I’m super unstable at riding, and I‘ve had a few extremely unlucky falls and scrapes that make me wonder if it’s the best choice for me. And I‘ve never successfully skated, ever, although @connrrr has suggested a bunch of good possibilities with that, so maybe that’s the right choice? I'm also hampered by a lack of willingness to look like an idiot in public when trying to do these extremely normal things that like 5 year olds can do with no problem.

    Anyway! That's my solo sport stuff!

    this is a cool thread! wish i'd have had the heart for skateboarding, haha

    so not really solo but kinda: i boxed in college & for a while after, back when county boxing gyms were like $40/year (before MMA trend pushed most of those to $100/month)

    so for years now, i just do the workout: some jump roping, some running/roadwork, a round of shadow boxing and like 3 rounds of bagwork - it's really great cardio, if even once a week

    [“Solo sports (that you do irl)”,“The Physical Actvity Thread”]

    I'm opening the thread up to team sports, 1-on-1, martial arts etc. so no one feels alienated and because I want to hear about boxing and derby too.

    I hate to move my body and to do things that take effort but I know I‘m supposed to in order to be healthy. I do occasional stationary cycling (I don’t own a bike that moves. I used to but it got stolen after I used it once and frankly it‘s pretty terrifying to even drive around here in a car let alone bike. there’s an accident on my corner once or twice per month).

    What I DO like to do is climbing, specifically bouldering. It doesn't feel as much like exercise because I have a goal I'm accomplishing, I get to level up because all the bouldering routes have numbers and difficulties on them, and it's communal because everybody asks other people for help figuring out routes or hand holds or things like that. I also have decent grip strength which helps me get started, and it works out the whole body more or less, which is also neat.

    Unfortunately I had a wrist injury (as you may have heard on the podcast!) about 6-7 months ago which is persisting and prevents me from doing any of that stuff. I have a crew ready to go once I can get back to it and maybe I'll do it two nights per week? three? That's the other thing, I hate that you gotta go to a place to do it. but the largest indoor gym in america(!? lol!??) opened up 15 mins away so it shouldn't be too bad. just waiting for the ole wrist to heal.

    I'd love to learn to ride a bike properly again, so I'm thinking I might do a little game store tour with somebody I know in kyoto in order to reeducate myself. If that works out maybe I'll buy some cheap bike out here and occasionally go up the street and hopefully not die in the process! Or maybe I'll just save up my millions until I can afford to live in a country where it's safe to bike ha ha. I think I would actually enjoy cycling if it felt in any way safe.

    I try to walk as much as possible, and only take the train when I'm going really far away. Does that count?

    I hope soooo!

    Because I haven't gone to the gym since the pandemic started. Before corona-chan, I was lifting a lot of weights and having a good time. I bench-pressed 100kg, which is whatever if you're a real kin-tore type of person, but it was a big deal for me, let me tell you!

    I used to love playing sports, but I have had too many foot and ankle surgeries in my life, and they've caught up to me.

    Swimming is great in theory, but I find pools super gross, and don't live near enough a swimmable ocean zone.

    My friend is encouraging me to get into cycling, and that sounds somewhat more appealing than going back to the gym.

    A few years ago I weighed my heaviest at 300 pounds(though I had always been chubby to obese since I was a kid) and in order to lose weight I got acquainted with exercise…and now I weight lift 3-4 times a week! At one point I dropped down to 165(too little lol ) and now I’ve bounced slightly back up to a healthier weight. I like lifting! I like the sense of progression, I like how tied to specific diet stuff it is, I like how many breaks you can take lol. I listen to a lot of podcasts while lifting so in addition to being exercise, needing stuff to listen to while exercising was actually what led me to IC and listening to all the old episodes in order sometime in 2019.

    For cardio I basically only like walking. I have running a real shot, and it definitely improved my endurance, but I didn’t like it enough to consistently feel motivated to do it. Cycling is fun sometimes but I don’t love it. So I just walk.

    @“antillese”#p117012 lol when I was a tween and graduated from my awesome huffy bikes to a regular mountain bike I realized that biking sucks real bad because the bike is super heavy and its not fun! Eventually I found about about road bikes but the damage was done!

    I used to skateboard ages ago and my bro is super into it so I want to pick one up again this summer. other than that I walk impossibly long distances. One year I had a little walk tracker app that told me my steps and with the job I had I was sometimes getting up to 40,000 steps which is nuts. I clocked 5 million at some point and took a picture. I also like running because it makes me super healthy but its hard for me to keep it up with weather/life etc.

    I love racquet sports! I used to compete in junior tennis growing up, and while I don‘t get out to play it much as I want, I still hold it above the rest. But it takes two to tango and a good tennis partner is hard to find especially as you’re getting older and everyone moves cities. That‘s where Badminton comes in, because it’s basically just tennis with accessibility mode, you can have a good time playing that with just about anyone.

    I love squash too, it is the most thrilling game. It's all about speed, stretching, reflexes and aggressively pursuing your opponent. The strategic elements are better and more reactive than tennis because you have to make faster decisions with more control and a wider variety of placements. But I just haven't really played it since like 2015 and honestly I'm kind of intimidated to go back. I don't know that my knees could handle it. Racquetball is the more accessible equivalent, and you can absolutely play that one alone. But I always have anxiety about claiming a court and people hovering over you and bullying you out... I'd sign up for any gym with a functional reservation system but that seems impossible to find.

    Most of my physical activity these days is hiking "LA Style" (aka just go for a nice little walk outdoors) but I kind of want to do something with a little more _octane_ to get me into better shape. I was thinking of starting SoulCycle or something with dedicated classes I could plan my schedule around. I'm jealous of all the bikers and skaters here, because I am clumsy and don't have a great sense of balance. I've fallen off and gotten hurt too many times to go do it outside for real, so I'm fine with a more simulatory experience.

    Running is the hobby I‘ve consistently sustained for the longest amount of time – I started when I was in middle school – but I feel kind of weird about it because it’s not really my own hobby – it‘s my dad’s. He was (and is) very serious about it. When I was growing up he‘d go to random local 5k’s once or twice a month and run a marathon at least once a year. He‘d time every single run, no matter how relaxed it was supposed to be, and record it in a book. He loved to read shoe reviews – sometimes when he was bored he’d take me to the shoe store and just look at all the shoes, making remarks about their materials, design and manufacturing process without actually buying anything.

    My own enjoyment of running is very divorced from races or times or shoes. To put it in video game terms, you sometimes encounter games clearly made by a bunch of creative types who wanted to make a world for you to exist in, but didn't really know what you should be doing in that world, so they came up with a bunch of random activities to move you around. Shenmue is the clearest example. Running for me feels like one of those random activities that gives me an excuse to exist in certain environments I wouldn't otherwise.

    For instance, I always like entering "car world": places where there are no signs of human life except for cars. In Baltimore there were a few not-quite-highways that had tiny little sidewalks on one side covered in trash and a forest of foliage growing out of the numerous cracks in the pavement. One in particular that I liked went down into the ground a bit, so there were big concrete walls on either side and lots of bridges passing overhead. You start running on this road and it might be a mile or two until you reach a safe place to get off of it. It really makes you feel like you've entered another universe, until miraculously you encounter another person walking the opposite direction on this tiny sidewalk for some reason, and you have to risk getting hit by a car to pass each other.

    In Shanghai I like running on West Yanan Road, which goes all the way to the airport (near the airport it really does feel like car world), and the whole way it has an [elevated highway]('an_Elevated_Road) above it. There are some interchanges of three or more highways that are absolutely massive pieces of infrastructure with something like a whole ecosystem existing beneath it. I always find running through those sections nice.

    1 Like

    @“whatsarobot”#p117195 hey, walking rules! It counts all the way!!

    @"saddleblasters"#p117221 there's so much car world in big city China!! Shanghai, Beijing, Dalian, so much car world!!