Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Weather Outside is Frightful

For some reason, flipping the calendar over to December here in middle Tennessee this year was like flipping a switch on the big thermostat in the sky. We bypassed the "Cool" setting and went right to "Cold," and then had snow flurries this past weekend ... yes, snow flurries. In the freaking southeastern United States, on the first weekend in December, still three weeks from winter, and we get SNOW?!


It was so lousy last week that I didn't even bike in to work. Not one day. There were only about half a dozen weeks this whole year when I didn't bike in to work at least one day, and two of those were because I was on vacation.

Of course, in January, I rode in one day when it was five degrees. And last November I had a programming class over on the north side of town, and biked in to that ... even though it was an extra 20 miles round-trip, and pretty darned cold that day, too.

I think the problem is actually that I'm suffering from my own success.

Last year, I had to ride in some crappy weather to get in my 10,000 miles. This year, I hit that mark this past Saturday morning, riding a little 40-mile route in mid-30 temperatures on the first true Polar Bear Ride of the season.

Durk Peterson has been leading the Saturday Polar Bear Rides in Leiper's Fork for as long as I have lived here. No matter how cold and windy it is, you can count on a good hilly workout with Durk every Saturday. I would say that he likes to suffer, except that he is always so good-natured about these rides.

As you can see, we were all bundled up. I was wearing my beloved Assos gear, with winter shoes and chemical toe warmers on the socks, plus lobster mitts keeping my fingers warm. Frankly, I was dressed just about perfectly, which was easier to do since I kept the ride short and finished before the day reached the balmy 40's.

I started the day 39 miles away from 10,000. We rode 41, so that I pulled into the parking lot at 10,002. Goal met.

I could have ridden during the afternoon. It was not too windy, and it got all the way up to 42 at my house. Instead, I did some chores, and got ready for the Harpeth Bike Club's Holiday Party that night. RandoGirl and I chatted with friends, ate good food, listened to some really great music, and boogied.

Sunday, we met Mike and Patty Willman, and the four of us rode our tandems down to Henpeck and back. Again, the temperatures stayed in the 30's, and there was just a bit of wind, so we rode just under 40 miles.

I'm pretty sure that I'll get interested enough in riding to suffer the current temperatures again. It may not be in the next couple of weeks ... but it doesn't have to be. I've met my goal mileage for the year, and I'm having fun.

I'll let you know when that changes.

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