Running & Biking on the New River Trail

Jennifer and I went bike riding on the New River Trail this morning. We started at Gambetta and rode all the way to Byllesby Dam and back. We rode about 13 miles all together. I absolutely love the outdoors and we are blessed to have such incredible natural beauty right in our hometown. I try to get out and ride or run at least twice a week. It is really a pain (literally) to get back into shape. As I have gotten older and larger, it really has made a difference.

Luckily there is some technology that can help as you run and bike. I’ve got one of the little bike cyclocomputers that I purchased at Wally World on clearance. It tells you your average speed, distance, and time riding. It really helps when you are pushing yourself to know how fast and how far you are going. It uses a simple magnet sensor to count how many times the wheel spins in a given time. Using the circumference of your tire, it is easy to calculate how far you have been. I also occasionally use a chest heart rate strap that tells me my pulse on a special watch. Knowing your heart is important to push yourself at a good pace.

Now for the good stuff. Apple and Nike have teamed up to design a sensor that fits in your shoe and transmits to a receiver plugged in your ipod nano. At first I thought it might be a simple pedometer which just measures your steps and are typically inaccurate. But this sensor is a 3D accelerometer which measures the acceleration and deceleration of your footstrike while running. It can tell how long your foot stays in contact with the ground and can differentiate between walking and running. The coolest thing about it is that it only costs $29. It is supposed to be over 90% accurate out of the box and even more so after you calibrate it to your running/walking style. Since I don’t want to put down $100 for a new pair of Nike shoes, I plan on doing some X-Acto work on my shoes and placing the sensor in my Pearl Izumi running shoes. I’ll let you know how it works out.

I have been convicted about how important it is to take care of my body and keep in shape. I know we all have heard a million times that our bodies are the temple of God, but do we really believe it? If you were only given one car to use for life, would you be careful with it and not abuse it? So why do we over-eat, why do we sit on our butts all day, and why do we not take care of ourselves? I also want to teach my kids the importance of staying in shape. And to top it all off, we get to learn and enjoy about the beauty of God’s creation.
If a little technology helps to accomplish this, then why not take advantage of it?


I am a former design engineer who now pastors Cornerstone Community Church in Galax, Virginia. I'm passionate about following Jesus and I love technology. I've been married to Jennifer for 28 years, and we have three adult children.

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3 Responses

  1. jenni says:

    I had a great time on the trail today too! It was a beautiful day! You didn’t put the part about how wonderful and beautiful and amazing your wife is – I guess you are saving that so you can dedicate an entire entry to me!!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Loved Jenni’s comments!!!

  3. Anonymous says:

    I can not believe Mike did NOT talk about Jenni. She and the kids are the best things he has going!! Ha! Ha! In reality, the entire Morris familiy is AWESOME!

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