Sunday, January 25, 2015

Can I Play with Madness ...

Too much snow on the ground to ride in the woods and I really don't want to be on the roads with all this slop, either, so the next best winter workout is a good XC Ski at Fairfield Hills, the former State Psychiatric Hospital in Newtown, CT.  Of course the other thing taking me away from cycling or any other physical activity is the fact that last weekend I slipped on the ice and banged top of my shin and it swelled up to the size of a baseball.  It's still swollen, just not as much, and it only hurts if I put pressure on the bump, so as long as I don't fall on it again, I am good to go!

When I got to the end of Keating Farms Road, I couldn't believe on one had been skiing yet. The warm-up earlier in the day and light rain made snow smooth and slick.  There was a wind out of the North that made it a lot colder than I was expecting and I was lamenting that I didn't wear my mittens.  However, once I started climbing from the bottom of Yahoo Hill, that all changed.

Since I have been mostly skiing Nordic on the slopes this year it fun to be in the flats and trying some different techniques that I have been teaching myself, like doing raised heel turn.  By angling my the opposite ski of the turn in towards my knee, I am able to turn slightly and thus creating a smoother arch for the next person to follow.

After two miles and hour of skiing I was feeling pretty good and everything was soaked from the workout.  The one thing I tried differently in equipment arena was wearing my old pants but I forgot my gaiters so I got a little snow in my boots.  I will definitely use the ski pants but when it's much colder.  When it's around 30 degrees long johns my old Army BDU trousers are still the best combination.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

First Dirt (acutally snow)

Usually by now we would have had a few good snow storms and I wouldn't even be thinking about mountain biking but that's not been the case this year.  Frigid temperatures around here means either riding the trainer in the garage or when the thermometer gets to be 20 degrees or more, and there isn't much snow on the ground then mountain biking will always be a blast.

My first trail ride of 2015 was indeed just that.  An inch of snow meant plenty of traction and the trails were perfect.  When I have the time, like today, I ride in on the Brody, go down the Gussy, hit the Reach Around and then back up the Gussy to the Unmarked and Unsanctioned Trail.  While on DSP, I came across three guys on bikes coming the other way.  That's probably best way to ride DSP but I prefer to ride the Gussy down so until I can find a way to hit both trails in the same direction I will have to stick with this new route.

I did try something new today.  Instead of taking the Connector to the boat ramp I went towards the old Jalopy and then cut across the forest road and eventually made my way out towards the gate. There is some nice terrain back there and made the end of a great ride just a little better.

Friday, January 02, 2015

New Year's Day ride to the Beach

First ride of 2015 was freaking cold!  We spent the night in Trumbull after celebrating New Years with good friends that also live in Trumbull which took away from a long drive home after the revelry.  Since we were sleeping over, I brought my road bike and the next morning I headed out while everyone in the house was still sleeping!

While riding down Route 136, I went slower because my legs felt like they were going numb so I went to a higher gear and pedaled with a higher effort to warm up my legs.  It worked but by the time I got to the Minute Man, then wind coming off the water didn't help.