Winter cycling, NC cycling and a year-end wrap-up

Some people think that the winter is a significant off-season for cyclists especially in New England with the snow and cold. But that's about as far from the truth as you can get as it's important to keep up aerobic fitness during the winter in preparation for the hard efforts of spring and summer. I try to get outside as frequently as I can but this winter I'm forcing myself to get on the trainer sometimes as well if the weather is really bad out (like, for example, today when we're getting like eight inches of snow).

In those cases, I'm realizing that NetFlix is a very good thing and especially the instant watch functionality coupled with a TiVo. Some movies are better than others for riding to and I don't yet have it down to a science. But action movies seem pretty good generally – today's selection was The Fugitive which was a pretty good choice.

Another thing that's helpful is going somewhere warmer for a week. We spent last week at my parents' house in western NC and I took my bike along. Unfortunately there weren't enough great weather days but there were one or two. And I noticed a few things while there and riding

  • While maybe not significantly more vertical gain on a given ride, you are more often going up or down as there is signicosmtlu less flat present
  • Everything is further apart distance wise even if car place to place times aren't significantly different than around here.
  • A dog chasing you can make you ride very fast :)
  • My base training plan seems to at least be somewhat working. I went out with the A group of hickory velo club on Saturday and had no problems keeping ip through the hills and fast straights even though I haven't ridden hard or fast in two months now
  • Defeet is based in western NC and I rode with the founders of the company; very nice and cool people. Shane – thanks for letting me suck your wheel much of the ride :)
  • Not many cyclists on the roads in Hickory but cars give a much wider berth; they fully go into the other lane instead of eying to see how little space they can give you

As far as overall cycling for the year, I didn't do nearly as good of a job of tracking as I did last year and I also had some frustration with my Garmin Edge 305 dying until I found the trick to stop it from doing so, but it looks like I did about 2500 miles on my Redline 9-2-5 and 3500 or so miles on my Merlin. Given how busy the year was, getting 6000 miles is a pretty big accomplishment in my view.

Anyway that's what I've got for today. I'm off until next Monday and then back to work and also going to be helping out with the initiation rites for the SDM 09s :). Classes don't start back until the first of February although I'm going to do a couple of IAP offerings I think. And I still owe a fall semester wrap up post soon. But for now, Happy New Years and if you make resolutions, best of luck with them.

4 thoughts on “Winter cycling, NC cycling and a year-end wrap-up”

  1. Also, no Yetis!

    You forgot that Western NC has less chance of you needing to bike through 18 foot snowdrifts; and subsequently due to changes of habit there is also less risk from being eaten by a Yeti.

    — mpdehaan who should just register for LJ already.

  2. Re: Also, no Yetis!

    I haven’t seen an 18 foot snow drift or a yeti. I’ll keep an eye out for them tomorrow :-)

    (also, you can use openid to post comments… and fedora is an openid provider)

  3. Wow, that’s better than 100 miles per week for the whole year. I’ve only managed that for 2 of the years that I’ve cycled seriously, and it’s a pretty big investment of time and energy. Kudos!

  4. Good to get out

    ALWAYS prefer riding outdoors to the trainer, but you’re right. Sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do – esp. in New England.

    Having grown up in KY & WVa I know what you mean about all the up/down and things being SO far apart. Glad I wasn’t into biking then LOL!

    Enjoying the blog – thanks for visiting mine.

    Happy New Year,
    SOC
    http://suitcaseofcourage.typepad.com

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