Racking up the miles: November 2013

Anyone who remembers last month will remember I was NOT a very happy person at the end of the October.  Between being away from home due to work and being sicker than a dog, my cycling suffered something fierce in October, I barely reached triple digits.  This, combined with fact that I was eating restaurant food for most of the month, was NOT making me happy.

I had concerns whether November would be any better.  Around here, November is one of our worst weather months of the year.  In the past, November has thrown major floods, bad wind storms, and heavy snow

imageAny one of these would hurt my overall miles.  And I was correct, the weather did cause me issues… 

It wasn’t any of the above items though.  We had rain, but not too much or too bad, and we even had a minor windstorm.  The problem I had though was cold!  Now I have enough layers to keep me warm no matter WHAT the temp is.  But, with the wind then rain, the roads and trails were covered with wet leaves.  Add freezing temps, and even freezing fog, conditions were WAY to slippery for a riding into work.

This meant I had to work around these conditions.  I continued to ride home from work at least 3 times a week.  The weather warmed up during the day allowing me to add some miles.  I was also able to sneak in a couple of longer (30 mile) rides on 2 weekends.  Considering that there were holiday preparations, a birthday and other things competing for my time this month, I am lucky I could get those in!  (Kudos to my wife for kicking my ass outside to do them!)

These rides all combined to give me 271 miles in November!

imageWhat I am happiest about is that the vast majority of these miles were outside!  I had very VERY few days where I was stuck in the shed riding on the rollers watching movies.  I can honestly tell you that last year, almost ALL my miles were indoors.

The difference?  Changing careers, and being able to bike commute.  Last year at this time I was twice as far from home.  I had no choice but to drive.  Being close, and having the gear to stay comfy in rain or cold.  I can also get within 4 miles of home before the sun goes down.  This means I have bike commuted for 7 months…. If I can make it through the next 2, I will have no problems being a year round commuter!

December will be interesting!  I have less than 200 miles left before I hit the next milestone, 14,000 miles.  Some may say its silly to keep track, but I like knowing how far I have gone on two wheels.  In addition, I have signed up for a boxing/MMA fitness class at work.  This will help me with core conditioning.  The one class last week kick my butt, so we will see what happens for the next 5 weeks…

Also, a week from today, is the Seattle Jingle Bell Walk. Its only 5K, but it will be my longest walk in quite a while.  I am looking forward to it!

Overall, no complaints for this month.  At the end of October, I was not a happy man, and pretty down on myself.  This proves to me I can keep it up and get a jump start on 2014.  I have some serious rides to do next year, and I want to be ready!

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