Professors lead pack in national bike ride challenge
Georgia College professors put pedals to pavement for this year’s Get Up & Ride National Bike Challenge to help improve their health and the environment.
The free, first-year program connects communities through bicycling. Its goal is to unite 50,000 people to bike 10 million miles through Aug. 31.
Leading the pack for Georgia College in Millegdeville in miles cycled is Dr. Doug Keith, Georgia College associate professor of music therapy, who has logged 463 miles thus far during the challenge.
“It’s an important message to our community and state that Milledgeville rides bikes,” said Keith, an avid cyclist. “The challenge gives a perspective of how good it feels to ride a bike and may generate more patience and understanding on the part of motorists.”
On a local level Georgia College’s team of 10 riders ranks second in the community in miles, logging a total distance of 3,157 miles behind Bicycling Club of Milledgeville, which totals 5,435 miles.
On a national level Milledgeville ranks ninth on the “communities” leaderboard with 10,414 miles logged.
“There is sort of an invisible team aspect,” Keith said. “When I ride alone, I contribute to the team points.”
The National Bike Challenge is a four-month program for individuals, workplaces and organizations. The challenge began May 1 and ends Aug. 31.
A partnership between League of American Bicyclists, Bikes Belong, Kimberly-Clark Corp. and Endomondo, the challenge encourages people to bike for recreation and transportation.
Endomondo is a mobile-based sports and fitness tracking community that tallies individual and team miles ridden during the challenge.
The challenge works on a monthly point system. One challenge point is awarded for each mile. Twenty challenge points are awarded for each day a biker rides.
While the challenge does strive to improve health, the environment and savings, the points earned are opportunities to win prizes such as trail trips, top-brand performance bikes and bike accessories.
Georgia College commits to the challenge. Keith encourages both the campus and local community to learn more about opportunities like the National Bike Challenge and get involved.
“I hope more people will ride,” said Keith, “because bicycling makes the roads safer for everyone.”
Visit www.endomondo.com/campaign/national to learn more about the challenge and competition updates.