I was so excited to have a bike every night I would persuade my father to go out and hold me up while we went around the house and I developed my balance so that I could ride. By the time the training wheels came, I could ride the bike and no longer need them.
My family lived at the Baker Ranger Station, where my father was the forest ranger. The ranger station was a mile out of a small town in the southeast part of Utah . Because we lived out of town, our bicycles were the mode of transportation we used when we went to school and to our friends’ houses.
We had an hour off at lunch, and I often rode home to a lovely nutritious lunch prepared by my mother. I would then ride the mile back to school. By the end of the day we had a minimum of four miles without out even thinking of exercise.
That is the kind of exercise I love — the kind you do without thinking that you are putting in your time to develop your body.
My father was transferred to Salt Lake when I was 12. I did not do as much biking because we lived in a neighborhood. When I went away to BYU I did not take my bike, and my biking days were over.
A New Beginning
Once I wrote my book Roughing it Easy, my life became a life of fast-paced travel and much stress. After the inevitable burnout from that intense stress and fast pace, I began to gain weight. I went from 180 to 326.5 pounds in about a ten-year period. I literally found my self imprisoned by my weight. I got to the point that if I was on the floor or the ground there was a question if I could get myself up.
After I did a presentation on “How to Get a Million Dollars’ Worth of Free Publicity” in California, Jackie Keller of Nutrifitonline.com came up to me and said, “I can help you lose weight.” Being from the multilevel capital of the world, Salt Lake City, I was sure that she wanted to put me in her downline to sell some magic weight loss formula. She gave me her card, and for some reason I kept it.
After going to New York and having a horrible time walking in a city that is build around walking I came home at 320 pounds and said, “This is it! I have to find some way to change my life and lose all this excess baggage.”
I found Jackie’s card, called her, and said that I was ready to go to work. Not long after I started on my journey out of body prison (when you weigh so much that you are held down by the weight of your body, you are in body prison), Jackie said to me, “You need to find an exercise that you love and will do.”
My head flashed back to my love of riding a bike. I went to a sale to buy a recumbent bike, and as I went into the showroom I saw two bikes. They looked just like the one that I had as a kid. They were $300 dollar bikes on sale for $100. I stepped up to the counter and before I knew it I said, “I will take both.” I probably only needed one, but it was good for me to have two because when I had a flat tire I could still keep exercising until I could get my flat fixed.
Biking in China
When I went to China I knew I had found my soul bike mates. China has both the world’s largest population and the world largest bike count.
I was so amazed by what they could put on a bike. Bikes are a way of life for them and for many it is their only transportation.
In most big cities you will find bike lanes just as you find car lanes. There are also bike light to help merge the bikes, cars, and buses.