Have you made any New Year’s resolutions? New year, new you, and all that. Plenty of us make some sort of oath to ourselves, be it to lose a bit of weight, learn a new skill, or knock the ciggies on the head, starting from the first of January; but not many of us see them through with any real gusto. So let’s make 2022 different. Let’s all make some New Year’s resolutions that we can A, keep, and B, will actually make our lives better. So without any further ado, let’s get into it. Here are the only five New Year’s resolutions that every motorcyclist should be making…
We can all ride more. And we all should. There’s nothing that’ll take your mind off the woes of everyday life, like a couple of hours in the saddle. In fact, if you ask me, the single best thing about motorcycle ownership, is the fact that it means you can go for a ride whenever you want. So why not make the most of it.
That’s exactly what I am going to do this year. We’ve all spent too long worrying about what we can and can’t do, not really knowing whether or not we’re breaking the rules by leaving our front doors, and I’ve had enough. I’m not saying I’m about to start flagrantly breaking ‘social distancing’ rules, but in 2022 (whenever it’s safe and legal to do so, of course) I’m going for a ride on my bike.
One thing that lockdown, self-isolation, quarantine and all that nonsense has taught me, is that I actually enjoy learning stuff. I wasn’t really into it at school, but now I’m in my 30s and rapidly approaching adulthood I can see how learning new skills can improve your life immeasurably. Even if it’s just to show off, every so often.
Go and do a wheelie school, or some off-road training. It’ll make you a better rider, which means you’ll enjoy riding more. And think of how impressed all your mates will be when you’re giving it the old 12 ‘o’ clock wheelie, past the pub beer garden.
Certain skills, can improve your life and save you cash, too. Rather than taking your bike to the dealership to have it cleaned or get the tyre pressures checked (some people actually do this), lean to do it yourself. And if you’re already pretty confident with a pressure gauge, why not learn how to use a spanner, if you don’t already know how to.
Anyone that does know how to use a spanner will also know how much more autonomous it’ll make your relationship with your bike. Let’s be fair, most of us have got some idea how to use a spanner, to varying degrees. But that doesn’t mean we’re all confident enough, or have the time, to do as much work on our own bikes as we’d like.
But we can all make time. And we can build confidence. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a lover of getting my hands (overly) dirty, but there’s something a bit more special about taking care of your pride and joy. No mechanic in the world’s going to be as conscientious as I am, when I’m working on my own bike; not because their crap, but because their heart isn’t going to be in it, in the same way as mine. Servicing your own bike, fitting your own parts and generally looking after it yourself, really is worth doing. Why not make that at least one of your 2022 New Year’s resolutions?
This is something that I’ve been trying to get myself to do for the past 10 years. Unfortunately, it hasn’t happened, and I’ve steadily been getting fatter and fatter and fatter. But I had an epiphany at Christmas. I think I’ve been going about it the wrong way. I want to get fitter, but I’m not very good at going to the gym. In fact, I’m not very good at doing any sort of traditional exercise. But that doesn’t have to stop me getting fit. Because there’s a really good way of getting fit, that doesn’t involve gyms, weights, or 10 mile runs.
It’s motocross. I’ve got a motocross bike that I don’t ride anywhere near as much as I should, which is obviously why I’m so fat (the beer and cheeseburgers might have something to do with it, too). So for 2022, one of my main New Year’s resolutions is to exercise more; and I plan to carry that exercise out on my motocross bike.
I know we’ve already had this one, but I’m writing it again, because it’s the most important. Doubly important. If you can’t exercise more, learn more and spanner more, you can ride more. And so you should. Because it’s about time you allowed yourself some ‘me-time’. Go and enjoy your bike. Enjoy your local roads. Book a trackday. Do some off-road riding. Life’s too short to have your bike parked up in the garage for weeks on end, without turning a wheel. So if you’re going to make one resolution this year, make it be to ride more. And this time, keep it.