It’s now the middle of winter and I can’t wait for it to pass and for spring to give us some warmer weather .Patience has never been one of my strong points.
The winter snow has arrived on the mountains surrounding Nelson and after the snow - the frosts made the air and wind absolutely freezing, never-the-less, I have been trying to get my usual long rides in. I feel like the ‘Michelin Man’ with all the layers I’ve got on. It is too cold for an ordinary winter training jacket, so I have an ordinary fleece jacket on over my poly-prop under layer, and a vest on top. I have neoprene booties on over my shoes to stop my feet freezing, and woolly gloves instead of my cycling gloves. When it is only 2 degrees (Celsius) in the early morning on my way to work, I have a woolly scarf wrapped around my head under my helmet and around my mouth. I know I must look ridiculous, but I don’t care, at least I am not a sedentary car user not getting a sweat up at all in winter.
|Snowing in the mountains.|
I don’t have the daylight either for rides of over 125kms, so I just have to accept that I can only do that length of ride for now. To make up for it, I have increased my weekly average from 200kms to 250 -300kms, and am achieving that by one long ride and one slightly shorter one, and at least a hundred kms of commuting. Once spring finally makes itself known and the daylight increases, I can up the weekly average again.
|Heading to the snow capped mountains for our weekly ride.|
Why am I devoted to distance and counting my kilometres? I want to do the Trans Am race next year. I am excited about the Trans Am, or the unsupported race across America. It is everything I enjoy, long distance, touring, crossing countries and the accomplishment you feel afterwards. My goal is to be the fastest Vet 3 women (over 50 years old); it would also nice to be the first married couple to complete it.
I have made a list of stuff I need to get, but realised that I can’t afford all of that stuff so have whittled it back to smart phone so that I can still continue to communicate and post my blog, and a solar power charger to charge my camera, and phone (yes I know my phone will have a camera), and my MP3 player. I really wanted to get a new one person tent, but the one and a half person tent we have is only 600gms heavier than a new one, so I will use that. This trip will cost us twice as much as the other contestants as there are two of us doing it, so we will have to cut costs by camping as much as possible instead of the luxury of using motels.
It is critical to cut back on everything to be as light as possible. So one pair of cycling clothes and one change of top for when not cycling, only cycling shoes and no other shoes, no cooking stuff, although I will take a can opener and pocket knife, cup and spoon, that way I can eat cereal etc. I am sure I will refine this list as I go.
As for training, I am going to cycle around New Zealand in the spring, do Radonnuering events over the summer to get competent at long distance and maybe the odd racing event, to work on my speed. So you can see why I can’t wait for winter to end, I’m impatient to get started.