24 January, 2014

2014 Goal

Last year marked my return to serious cycling after a few year hiatus. I'd gained some weight and needed to get myself back in shape (wow, as the years roll by it's so much easier to turn into a tub of goo). So, I signed up for the Susan G. Komen "Ride for the Cure". I signed up for the 30 mile ride, knowing I could complete that, but with a stretch goal of completing the Metric Century (100km, or 62.5 miles). Although I got a late start on training, by the time the ride rolled around in August, I was feeling pretty good. In the meantime, I'd spent some time training specifically for this event. I knew the route featured some wide open spaces (wind) and some pretty significant hills - so I put in time on both.

On ride day, I was a bundle of nerves. I started chatting with a couple at the start who were both mountain bikers who had recently taken up road riding. She had never ridden over 30 miles ever, and he didn't have a ton of road miles in, so they were a good match for me. By the end of the ride, we'd become a team, helping Jenn with some pretty rough hills and encouraging each other. I finished strong and with some fuel left in the tank.

Feeling strong at the finish!
 My original goal was to complete a Century by my 50th birthday (I'm 47 now), but this year I decided what the hell, go for it. I know that with more miles, my cool new Giant Defy Advanced 0 carbon bike, and newfound confidence I can do it! Once again, I'm riding in honor of my friend Pam Prentice who lost a long battle with breast cancer a few years back.

So, today, I signed up. I'm excited and ready to rock this one! This goal will be good for me, and is for a worthy cause. Even though August seems years away on this blustery January day, I'm warmed by the prospect of this goal.

I hope you'll consider supporting me with a donation. Please go here to see more about my personal ride and to donate online.


09 January, 2014

Stir Crazy

"Polar Vortex". A term I didn't even previously know existed. And one that pretty much sums up my outdoor time over the past month or so. Seriously, when I walked my dog the other morning, it was -16 degrees. There's no way I'm going out to play in that. Was supposed to duck hunting on Tuesday on Lake St. Clair. High temp for the day was -1 with wind chills pushing -30. Sounds like a great day to sit in a boat on open water. You know it's cold when the guide cancels on you.

Before this, a busy Holiday season and a wild time at work in December find me housebound way too much. Meanwhile I am itching to get on the sticks in my boat, or sliding down a snowy hill on the boards.

On the upside, I did book a return trip to Colorado for late February - early March. This means two things:
  1. Extra motivation to log some gym time. We do NOT need a repeat of last year's slovenly performance. Fortunately, this Summer's cycling gave me a good solid base.
  2. Time to hit the slopes. Last year, my first day on skis was at Beaver Creek, CO. Not a good plan. I need to get in a few ski days prior to heading out West.
Work travel will be taking a bite out of January, so I'm going to really have to push to get outside. But I need it. I crave it. When I can't get outside to play, the tension just builds. The outdoors is where I go to recharge, relax, and reprioritize. I'm not spiritual in an organized sense, but nature is my church. Must. Get. Out. And. Play.