09 January 2010

2010 Is Shaping Up Nicely

This morning I slept in much later than usual, and it was awesome. I looked out the window to find my car under a blanket of fresh snow, which to my northern-minded eyes was bliss. I only wished that AMH and I had buckled down last year and bought XC Skis. I then made the rookie mistake of asking Aaron what he wanted for breakfast, which implied that I would be making it. But, even that turned out to be an okay thing because I'd been wanting to try to the egg "recipe"(with turkey bacon...) that I had almost perfected on Cook or Be Cooked. Placing the eggs, directly from the pan, over a small bed of spinach made for a nice steamed effect. I also got to break out the French press for a bit of espresso, which I hadn't enjoyed in awhile. All-in-all, I was pretty pleased with how it all turned out:I could get down to all 2010 Saturdays beginning this way; though that might be a bit of a stretch. Nonetheless, I'd say I'm in a much better place this January than I was for the last. I'm riding my bike - mostly inside - but I am getting out in the snow a bit. I love, love, love my new Salsa Mamasita, and I am pretty excited that my new winter gear is allowing for 2+ hour sessions in sub 25 climates. We visited Springs Valley Trail in Paoli, IN last Sunday, which is an 8 mi. loop around Springs Valley Lake that is reminiscent of old, narrowed FS roads and features about 1100ft of climbing. Total ride from the parking lot is about 10 mi. My Gaerne Eskimo boots kept my feet totally dry, even through the five ice cold creek crossings. I was quite impressed. I was less than impressed with my Camelbak bladder though, which leaked all over my leg all day long. Fortunately my Craft Storm tights kept the barrier, but I definitely had a collection of icicles on my quad at the ride's end. I will soon be upgrading to the Hydrapak Reversible Reservoir System, which features a non-leaky bite valve and the ability to turn the bladder inside out for cleaning and drying.

The only down side to the whole ride was that, in a section under very heavy leaf cover, I caught a small branch in my spokes, and its many tentacles wreaked destruction anywhere they could reach. My hanger snapped in half, and my derailleur exploded. I always ride with a spare hanger (thanks to advice from Zed), so that part was no problem, but getting the warped derailleur together enough to not hit the spokes and still semi-function as at least a tensioner was a little tricky. I guess it's time for that Redwing SRAM X.0... I'll probably be riding my 'cross bike for a little while.

At any rate, I'm loving my bike; I'm riding my bike; I'm hitting the gym (Thanks, Mom!); I'm eating better; my HR is under better control. And there's snow. Things are looking up.

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