Thursday, February 09, 2006

Getting there

Date: Feb. 8
Mileage: 19.2
February mileage: 160.5
Temperature on departure: 26

Today's ride was sponsored by Andy. I realized that I passed 1,000 miles for my winter "season," which officially began Dec. 1. The total right now: 1,042.9. I've always been a recreational rider, and I think it has probably been a while since I logged 1,000 miles in a two-month span. I especially let myself go last year, when I discovered a cheap gym membership through my employer would allow me to spin myself into pretty good shape without all of the psychological turmoil of wind and heat and mud-soaked trails. My bikes, which together are worth more than my car, spent most of summer 2005 in my apartment gathering dust. What a fool I was.

Outside is where it's at, elements be damned. Doing all this winter riding has reminded me why I started cycling, back when I didn't really care about speed increments or my ghetto booty. I wanted to be entertained. I wanted to be engaged. I wanted rare moments of clarity, and I wanted to work for them. Yes, I lost my way. But I've reformed.

And, if nothing else, I think riding in the snow has really improved my handling skills. Come summer, I expect to be fully charged and ready to tear up the trails on my mountain bike - rather than hedging for more time on the road and choking the brakes down winding single tracks. Today, while riding downhill in the soft, uneven slush, I lost control of my bike twice and managed to ride out of it each time with nary a foot on the ground. I feel so much more confidence. I feel like I have skills. You know, like numchuck skills ... computer hacking skills ...

I need to go find some sweet jumps.

8 comments:

  1. You're scaring me.

    Soon, I fully expect to be reading your blog and you will be describing how much fun it is to ride a bike down a snowboard tube:-)

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  2. Actually, that sounds like fun George! Jill, you are doing great! Glad to hear about the total season miles, but it doesn't surprise me in the least little bit! Fun doing that sideslide on slush and riding it out, isn't it?::GRIN::

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  3. Shocks...pegs! Lucky!

    http://kjellquist.blogspot.com

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  4. I've really gotta see that movie . . . Gosh!

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  5. And to think you could be spending your time racing for 4 minutes indoors. More here:

    http://www.twincities.com/mld/twincities/sports/outdoors/13612041.htm

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  6. In reading a couple of your posts, I feel like such a pansy for not riding on what I consider cold days. I live in Dallas Texas for goodness sake, not Alaska. I usually tuck tail and stay off the bike when the temp drops below 60. I will have to remind myself that there is a girl in Alaska toughing it out. I guess I also need to invest in some cold weather gear...thanks for the inspiration.

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  7. You're the liger of mountain biking!

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  8. I think Preston, ID, needs to put up a "Home of Napoleon Dynamite" sign or something. That's the only fame they'll ever have.

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