The Joy of riding without a GPS or bike computer

Ming the Merciless

There is no mercy
Location
Inside my skull
In this latest lockdown I’ve started cycling without my GPS or a cycling computer. I mostly use the GPS for navigation but since my rides are now well within what I’d call my local mental map. I don’t need it for navigation.

It is rather liberating riding without any numbers on display, no map, no speed , no distance, no HR etc. I’ve always enjoyed the environment around whilst cycling. But there’s an extra joy riding without the devices and without recording the trip other than in my memories.

It takes me back to the first twenty or so years of my cycling before I had anything more than the simple mileage counters that clicked away at the front hub.

What about the rest of you? Always recording your rides, or happy to just go enjoy a ride and never mind collecting or looking at any data about it.
 
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matticus

Über Member
or happy to just go enjoy a ride and never mind collecting or looking at any data about it.
This.

Enough numbers/metrics/spreadsheets at work!
 

CanucksTraveller

Macho Business Donkey Wrestler
Location
Hertfordshire
I might glance at my computer occasionally, maybe just to see what speed I'm doing on a descent, or see what gradient a climb is, but otherwise I don't look at it for 95 percent of the day. I don't post to Strava. I agree it's nice to just ride and not worry about performance, or time, distance or directions. Theyre handy things but it's good to not be a slave to it.
 

Archie_tect

De Skieven Architek... aka Penfold + Horace
Location
Northumberland
I pootle and enjoy finding where roads go- you can't get lost in the UK... might ride further than intended sometimes... that's what road signs are for.

I have my phone in my pocket and use Cyclemeter on it to keep a running tally of how far I've gone but never bother about where I am.
 

GoldenLamprey

Well-Known Member
I record all my rides, but I have, in the last year or so, often taken to leaving the computer on the map screen, even when I know where I am. I can see current speed, but not the average, so it stops me 'chasing' performance. Not quite the same as no computer, but seems to lead to a healthier approach to riding.
 

Drago

Flouncing Nobber
Location
Poshshire
Ive recorded every ride since 2011, but don't get upset on thw rare occssions that it doesn't record properly or at all.
 
I record all my rides, but I have, in the last year or so, often taken to leaving the computer on the map screen, even when I know where I am. I can see current speed, but not the average, so it stops me 'chasing' performance. Not quite the same as no computer, but seems to lead to a healthier approach to riding.
Same. Although my Wahoo has an annoying little triangle thingy next to the current speed, that indicates whether I’m going faster or slower than my ride average. Doh!

Why don’t we have a facepalm emoji?
 

Randomnerd

Formerly known as Woodenspoons
Location
North Yorkshire
Never recorded a ride or used gps or done anything but consult an Ordnance Survey map. I did try, but I’m too analogue. I’ll often “forget“ my mobile phone too, which adds to that nice separation / anxiety of being unplugged. Cannot understand the need to quantify and make statistics of life: perhaps a reaction to an upbringing where everything was analysed. Unplug. Be free.
 

All uphill

I didn't recognise you but I knew your bike
Location
Somerset
I like the convenience of having gaps on my phone when I'm tired and lost, and I like having a record of miles/speed/climb when I get home, but I enjoy rides so much more without a speedo.
 

Chap sur le velo

Active Member
Very interesting.
Have only been venturing further since last summer, 60km max so far, but I love the sense of freedom I've had. So far the general areas covered have been mostly known to me but you see so much more on a bike.


I'm wavering but suspect it won't be long before I take the plunge. Will try and use a computer on selective trips only.
 
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