Winterish Return

In my last post I was riding the high of coming off an excellent (enough) month of riding. Because of that high I thought I was mentally prepared for the predicted drop in temperatures, rain, snow, and lack of outside riding that the rest of this week would surely be offering. I was wrong.

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Thanks February

I feel like I need to say a big thank you to February. THANK YOU!

You see my winter riding goal is usually to get out at least once a week, braving the cold, snow and ice on the Fatterson with studded tires. The rides are usually no longer than 20-25 miles, I’m cold and miserable for most of the ride, and I swear that I’ll never do it again as I mentally plan my “let’s move someplace warm” sales pitch to Wifey. The rest of the time I hole up in the basement on the Drainer® or the Dreadmill® and pray that I’ll miraculously find fitness, despite not riding and drinking too much beer. Even back when I gave a shit about racing (that seems like a long time ago) I didn’t venture out too often in January and February. I would go to the gym, strength train, ride the trainer and use the StairMaster for hours on end.

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Gettin’ It

Despite its brevity, February in Michigan can be a long, depressing bastard of a month. February lodges itself in between the death-like acceptance of winter that January offers and the hopefulness of spring that March provides. Most often it’s bitterly cold, windy, and blanketed with ice and snow. However this February was not “most often.” We had several days of temps between 45˚ and 60˚, very little snow, and just a hint of ice at the beginning. While I am the first to admit that it should not be 55˚ in February, I am in no way going to complain about the ability to log over 265 miles as I attempted to jump start my fitness and hopefully some weight loss.

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Binge Riding

I am a notorious binger. I’ve been known to binge eat, drink, sleep, self loathe, and chaterbate. I also occasionally binge on things good for me; black bean burgers, manscaping, and riding. You wouldn’t know it from my muffin top, but when given the chance I will try to get as many minutes, hours, or miles in on the bike as I can. Add in that last Monday morning my doctor called me out for my ever-growing girth, I’ve been more determined than ever to get time in on the bike.

As luck would have it Ma Nature threw Michigan an unusual, but welcomed, weather pattern of warm February temps. Perfect for binge riding!

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Three Out of Four

Muddy Lake boots and gritty mud.

Riding three out of four days in February is cherished, even if they yield a mere 75 miles combined. Most of the miles were forced to be done on pavement, due to the dirt roads being a bottom bracket grinding, potential collarbone breaking, concoction of ice, slush, mud, standing water, and gritty sand.

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Changed Plans

All last week as I “ran” on the Dreadmill™, and spun my wheels going nowhere on the trainer, I set my mind to go down to the Cannonsburg Ski Area to take photos at the fat bike and snowboard races they were hosting. I figured I could use the practice and getting outside would do me good.

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Memories of the Past Week, Others

Outdoor riding continues to elude me for a variety of reasons; first because of the abundances of rutted ice on many roads, then because it got cold as shit outside and for some reason this winter I am lacking the motivation freeze my tits off. Please note that “lack of motivation” is just code for my laziness, but that’s your call.

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Empty Headed

You may wonder how the following relates to a cycling blog. Stick with it, I have a point eventually, you just have to sift through some ranting. Keep in mind there is surely a dose of hypocrisy, preachiness, and anger even though in my head it all makes perfect sense. Read at your own risk, or feel free to read something not a crap cycling blog. It’s totally your call.

Over the past few months I haven’t been sleeping very well. There are many “might-bes” and “could-bes,” which include such things as too much coffee, not enough riding, worry that my family’s entire world could come crashing down at any moment, and an ever-growing affection for nihilism. No matter the cause, counting sheep, masturbating, counting sheep masturbating, and masturbating while counting sheep only gets one so far, and I’ve found myself with time to think. This is both good (the time has allowed me to put some creative wheels in motion), and bad (see much of this paragraph). However in addition to all of that I have also had some thoughts that hover in the middle grounds between fond memories, existential ennui, and the want for simpler times.

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Toe Tales

There has been a distinct lack of things happening over the past week. Quality outside riding was once again shelved due to ice, then deep mud, then ice again, now more crap snow. Then my running was shelved because I stubbed my toe and ripped the toenail off (that felt just as you might imagine), which left it looking like it was gnawed on by a wolverine.

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The Return

Today was the return of various sorts of winter puke; rain, rain/snow mix, and finally wet snow. As of now not enough snow to make things fun, but enough to keep the roads–especially the dirt roads–crapper than ever.

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