This January has just been bizarre… a week ago I was fat biking in 10 degree weather and today I was in shorts and a short sleeve jersey and Cheyenne set a record at 70 degrees!
This past weekend was in the 50s and 60s down in Fort Collins so I got some good miles in. Saturday Jim and I rode about 29 miles/2 hours, looping down Taft Hill to Loveland, and back up through Masonville and Horsetooth. It was a nice chill ride complete with tons of alpacas and llamas. Any ride with alpacas and llamas is awesome! Saturday was actually an amazing day… I had a huge grin on my face and was just so happy. Sometimes I just need a good, fun, low key day on the bike with great company (and llamas)! We were also on a mission to get every cyclist that passed us to wave… only had one guy refuse to wave, woohoo!
Sunday I headed back down solo to get in at least 50 miles. I repeated the loop from Saturday, except at the end I turned off to go up over the Horsetooth dams. This part of the ride I had a stiff headwind, so being up on the dams was slightly sketchy. After the dams (I actually obeyed the speed limit off the north dam, thank you very much… but only due to the wind!) I climbed up the Bingham hills and headed north on the “cement plant loop” and then finally headed back to the car. Did 50.2 miles in just a smidge over 3 hours, which surprised me! I was super hammering, but felt good! I rarely ride over 25-30 miles, but the 50 felt good, even with all the steep climbing. I knocked minutes off some segment PR’s, which is always nice to see. Definitely enjoyed the long hours in the sun, and look forward to longer rides in nice weather!
The warm weather has continued into the week. Monday I ran out of work and jumped on my bike. It was 65 degrees and I was shocked I was wearing summer gear on my ride… no long fingered gloves, no long sleeve base layer, no knee or leg warms, no shoe covers, and even no wool socks! It was suppose to be a recovery ride, but for the first half I was so damn excited to be outside dressed like it was June instead of January that I was going super hard and pounding some climbs. I eventually came to my senses, but my 30 minute scheduled recovery ride became an hour and almost 17 miles.
Today was I antsy again to get out of work and on the bike for my scheduled 1 hour 15 minute endurance ride. Lately these have had to be done on a trainer, so I was just soooooooo eager to get outside! There was a stiff west wind, and I (somewhat stupidly) rode east for whatever reason, meaning a headwind on the way home. It was slightly chillier feeling due to some clouds, but once again I was dressed for summer! I was only miserable on Hwy 30 from Sapp Brothers truck stop to Reese Road, otherwise riding back west felt OK. By the time I hit the Greenway to head home the sun was out and I was smiling!
So spoiled we have been lately… unfortunately we must say goodbye to the 70 degree weather. 50s is predicted for the rest of the week, with 30s and snow on Saturday, and maybe touching 40 on Sunday. BIG SAD FACE. I’ve gotten so use to getting my endurance rides done outside that I am scared of not getting in the miles/hours I want as I have a low tolerance for being on a trainer over an hour (and it gets super uncomfortable). Sunday is a group mountain bike ride in Fort Collins for us that don’t follow football and that thing called a “Super Bowl” going on, so I will try to make it to that. Saturday I’ll just have to figure out…
This January is on track to being my highest amount of time ridden on a bike EVER! And close to be my second highest mileage month EVER! Whoa! At first I was worried what the increase in weekly time would be like, but I’ve fallen into a good routine. I’m averaging a bit over 8 hours a week so far. My biggest issues are now alternating angry bunionettes (was just my left foot originally, but now the right is in on the game too) and just realizing I need to use Chamois Butt’r (ahem, TMI, I know!). The biggest thing that is going to keep my grounded and on track will be keeping things fun. Could I have rode harder and more miles last Saturday? Yes, I suppose so. But would I have been missing out on riding with someone I love spending time with and missing out at yelling at llamas? Yes. It’s a balance… I’m not paid to do this, and it’s not my full time job. It’s something I’m suppose to do for fun, therefore some fun has to stay in the balance. So far I’ve been good at keeping fun in the mix!
And goodness, my first race of 2015 is coming up so fast! In just about two weeks I’ll be headed to Tucson for 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo! Early next week I have to pack up the Fate, lights, other things that I might not be able to fly with, and get it sent off to our sherpa for the weekend. It’s crazy how close it is coming up! Just one more thing to tease me with the warm weather and dry trails of summer while still in the dead of winter!