My brother posted a picture of the mountain bike he's had since 1997 on Facebook yesterday, seeking advice on which kind of bike he should upgrade to now. Seeing his older bike got me thinking about my own mountain bike -- and how many miles I've put on it in the seven years I've owned it.

I bought my current bike back in 2007, and according to the bike computer I had installed when I bought the bike, I've put on just over 2,800 miles (2,841, to be precise) since then. That's about 400 miles a year, and since my typical ride these days is about 10-12 miles, it equals about 35-40 rides per year. That's a lot of pedaling!

I've enjoyed cycling since I graduated from college 22 years ago. This current bike, which is my third, is a mountain bike or all-terrain bike, meaning it has a larger frame and larger tires, and is geared for riding steep, unpaved off-road trails. I bought it because I though the lighter racing bikes looked a little too fragile for me -- especially if I wanted to actually do a trail ride.

I have to confess, though, I haven't taken mine on a REAL off-road ride; I usually only ride it on the street -- or the great trail system here in Rochester.  I did enjoy riding the Gitchi-Gami State Trail north of Duluth a few years ago, as well as the Bearskin and Great River State Trails in Wisconsin.

I haven't done any long distance rides, and I haven't entered any big bike races, either. I guess you classify me as more your recreational cyclist. And, despite always seeming to face a headwind on the return trip back home (I hate that part!), heading out on the bike is a great way to get out and enjoy our beautiful landscape during our fleeting warm weather here in Minnesota!