This has been a pretty rough winter for riding. We have had a lot of snow for this area, and it has stuck around. That means that I have not been riding much at all, and my fitness level shows it. I got out to DuPont with some folks on Saturday, and it was the worst ride I've had in a long time. The cold air, sore/tired legs from squats, chunky, icy snow, and my inhaler giving its final puff, all joined together like the perfect storm of excuses for my abysmal performance on the bike. The people I was riding with are definitely faster than me, and I started too hard and just burned out early. They had a training agenda, so I just told them all to go ahead and I would continue on a winter, Rick-paced ride. Well that didn't work out all that well either. I tried to hit a couple of my usual trails, but Joanna Rd. was either the aforementioned chunky, icy snow, or a solid sheet of ice. I just cut my losses and turned around, riding a whopping 10 miles for the day. No ride is a waste, though, and at least I did get out and pedal a bit. I need to get out and ride more for sure, but unfortunately, more snow is on the way tonight.
I mentioned in a previous post that I had some new fitness plans, so I thought I'd just mention them here. I know my core strength is lacking, so I thought I'd give some kettlebell workouts a try. I'm on my third week, and I love them. I just bought a 30lb and a 50lb off of Walmart.com, and they are plenty for me so far. The workouts I found online have been fun. You basically just do five-exercise circuits, and do as many circuits as you can in 30 minutes, so there is a pretty good cardio aspect to them. I'm feeling stronger, and my pants are fitting looser, so I'm headed in the right direction. I also got some Vibram FiveFinger KSOs, aka, "monkey feet." These "shoes" are pretty cool. I work out in them, and I have just started trying to run in them. It will definitely take some time to get used to running in them, because you use different muscles and they can be a bit hard on your feet at first. My first attempt was a short, 1-mile run, and my calves were sore for 2 days. I think that's a good sign.
Hopefully I'll be able to start riding again soon, and this blog can get back to what I intended it to be.