Racking Up the Miles: January 2016

Folks, the first month of 2016 has NOT been the greatest ever.  The weather has remembered it is supposed to be cold, or wet or cold AND wet. Not the best conditions for our hero to be pedaling in.

I also had one of my hardest crashes in quite a while, the back wheel hit slippery metal on the trail


and I crashed and burned.

And I  unexpectedly lost a dear friend. Yeah, January was not so great, but I kept the wheels a turning…

New Years day weekend was colder than hell! However the sun was out, and I had to get my ass in gear.  I rode two out of the three days that weekend.  My toes froze, but the views and things to see made it worth it.

Red Tail Hawk Samammish River trail
Red Tail Hawk Samammish River trail
Snow capped Olympic Mountains through the Aurora bridge
Snow capped Olympic Mountains through the Aurora bridge


I was worried that this month would not get me the miles I needed to kick-start a new month.  For the last 3 years, Michelle and I have worked in Downtown Seattle.  During that time, I was able to drive to work with her in the morning and ride the 17 miles home.  3 days a week this was a an easy 51 miles a week.  Now, however, I live 5 miles from the new office.

The good news is I get more rides, the bad? They are much shorter.  Only 10 miles a day, means I lose over 20 miles per week. However, I have done my best to make up the difference with shed rides on the rollers, longer rides on the weekends.  Now I have to make time for what I enjoy instead of it falling in my lap.

Later in the year, I will do my long rides after work (I just need some more daylight!) In fact, at work today, some lady thought I was nuts when I said I liked to do at least 30 after work!

There was one afternoon though, I decided enough was enough.  My work was done, the weather was clear, and the road was calling! I headed out into a gorgeous, albeit COLD afternoon for the aforementioned 30 mile route.


To add to the challenges though, I was once again stuck in Spokane for a week, no bike and no miles.  This is also the week my friend and coworker died.  My bike is my way to work out fear, anger and yes grief, I was 300 miles away from the bike and the support of my wife.  I fell back on a very poor substitute, Spin Class!


I very much hate Spin Class, but this time it served two purposes.  First it kept the legs in shape. I hate taking a week off from the bike, and this kept me going.  Secondly, Spin Bitch ran me into the ground so far and so hard, I didn’t have the energy to be sad! I would leave, get dinner and go to bed. Worked like a charm.

I was also smart enough to turn the bike in for a tune up while I was gone.  Clean, tuned, new back brakes and new tires! I was ready to ride.

The last rides of a strange and hard month went a long way to making up for it. Last Saturday, I had the 7 bald eagle ride


Yep, 7 different birds in a 25 mile round trip. Everyone rides for different reasons, I do it for the sights, the sounds, the exercise and the piece of mind.  This starts my 9th year of serious riding, and surprisingly, this month has needed up with a decent tally.  285 miles! And I have signed up for the Chilly Hilly and RSVP.

It will be a good year!

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