Ride yourself happy #ride5000miles

Published: 08 March 2017

Joining our #ride5000miles campaign will make you happier, more skilled and richer. It might even save your marriage...

The average mileage of a British biker is around 3500 miles per year. The reasons for that are fairly obvious – in this increasingly busy world, us bikers are pulled about in every direction. We’re all more stretched than ever: money-wise, work-wise. So much to do and not enough time. 

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But we should all be riding instead. Our #ride5000miles initiative is about getting out and enjoying the best, most exciting things in all our lives more – bikes. It’s about remembering all the reasons that we all got into it in the first place. The thrill, the freedom, the sense of control, the stories, the meets and the mates we make on the way. In a world that seems full of bad news and uncertainty, this is just about fun. It’s about putting biking first sometimes.

Once you decide that you’re up for getting more out of riding, we’re here to help. By signing up to our challenge you’ll also get a support network – spurring you on. You’ll find new routes, new destinations and hopefully find more fulfilment than you have for years. This isn’t about throwing your old life away and heading off into the sunset – it’s about making a conscious effort to use your bike more and enjoy being a biker. You won’t regret it.

It’ll make you happier

“There are three main components to biking that makes us happy”, says Vincent Walsh, Professor of Human Brain Research at University College London. “Pleasure – as in the hit the thrill of speed or new kit, purpose – being in a social group, improving as a rider, learning about bikes and control – riding when and where you want.”

Biking produces happy-making chemicals, too. When you get your highs and have purpose you produce dopamine, when you feel part of a group you produce oxytocin and your brain also produces serotonin to regulate your long-term happiness.

“You get dopamine hits when you experience the pleasure of taking a corner exactly right,” says Prof Walsh. “The community of biking will stimulate oxytocin (a hormone associated with social bonding). Doing something you love will have an effect on regulation of neurotransmitters associated with mood regulation such as serotonin, too.”

You’ll bond with your bike

“The more people ride, the better they feel,” says Mark Edwards riding instructor of MCN’s chosen advanced training company, Rapid Training. “I train hundreds of riders each year and there is a marked difference between those who ride regularly and those who don’t. This shows itself up in three ways. The first is finesse – the riders who ride regularly and are more familiar with their bikes are much smoother and steadier in the way they operate them. The second is patience. Occasional riders seem desperate to get on the throttle, they can rush up-to stuff too fast and be a bit scary. Regular riders seem more chilled out and therefore enjoy it all a bit more, too. The third is observation – it seems regular riders plan ahead more and look further ahead too, probably because they are more familiar with their machines.” So that’s smoother, safer and with better vision, faster.  

It could save your marriage

This could be the perfect time to get your partner more involved in your motorcycling. The target of 5000 miles could be the excuse you need for more Sunday morning rides together, or that tour that you’ve always wanted to take. “Having shared activities is a bedrock for many partnerships. Sharing interests and activities are a point of connection and can stop partners from drifting apart and living separate lives,” says relationship expert Sarah Donelley. “Shared activities of which motorcycling could be one, work on a number of levels. They’re something partners can look forward to, plan together, enjoying doing together and can look back on fondly when they’re over.”

However, we will issue a disclaimer here: if your partner isn’t really that keen on motorcycling, and your marriage is on the rocks, plonking them on the back of your bike for days on end, probably in the rain, could be just the excuse they need to issue those divorce papers.

Looking for the perfect two-wheeled companion? Visit MCN Bikes For Sale website or use MCN's Bikes For Sale App.