Monday, December 30, 2013

A long way to the top

Since the crash in August I've been plagued by knee and hip problems, not to mention the lingering, renewed Crohn's issues over the past year. It's been a (litterally and metaphorically) wobbly path back to cycling, with a lot of ups and downs.

I've worked up to finally doing some real distances again, but am still distrustful of my knee's integrity and shy away from any real torque or out of the saddle riding. My base miles are still low for this winter and my fitness is behind where I need it to be leading into the next racing season. I've got a lot of work to do, but it's looking up. I have a referral to a new physical therapist; one who worked wonders on a cyclist friend who was told they'd never walk again.

And, one more promising sign is that this weekend I did a relatively fast ride from NYC to Bear Mountain in Harriman State Park and back, which includes 6000+ feet of elevation with a 5 mile climb in the middle. It almost destroyed me, but I survived and even said, "Oh, this is it? I thought it was longer" at the top of Bear.

Here's to continued kneehab to come. If it wasn't hard, it wouldn't be fun. Right?

The view from the top of Bear Mountain, NY.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Muckity muck.

Warm, cold, warm, cold, rain.... Snow, warm?

We've had some nutty weather over here in the NYC area. All of the snow melt has made for some very muddy riding earlier this week before things froze again.

Here's some lovely photo evidence of my rather impressive dirt tan lines!

sock lines!

dirt tan lines for December.

cycling mud masque, anyone? With a side of bleary, road salt splattered eye treatment.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

The season of cold-damp-rainy-snowy is upon us!

It's officially here! It's been here for about a month now. It's winter riding season.

Although sometimes it takes extra motivation to step out into the mist, or onto the frozen ground outside the doorstop, all hesitancy is always erased once I'm on my bike and moving.

Winter changes the landscape, making everything new again. Old routes covered in ice, or bare of leaves with new views at the top of climbs.

Into the wintry mist... friends, fun, and fog!

Tip for winter success: Order a case of those instant hand and toe warmers, so there is nothing holding you back from getting on your bike when it's freezing outside. Toe warmers make the difference for me, as cold feet is my big rate limiting factor.  Also, get some good waterproof shoe covers. Then, it's off into the cold-damp-beautiful world with you!