I cycle a lot during the warmer, drier spring, summer, and fall months. Come winter, I generally head indoors to train on a spinning bike. I can easily cycle 1,000 km / month when the weather is good, but have trouble maintaining the mileage when the days get shorter, colder, and wetter. Well, I want to change that. I want to cycle 10,000 kilometres in 2019.
To cycle 10,000 km / year means cycling ~30 km each and every day, ~210 km per week, or ~840 km a month. This doesn’t include days off for rest, or considers longer rides. I like to ride 30-40 km a day through the week, and complete a 75-100 km ride on the weekend with at least 1 day off. So, it should be easy to ride 10,000 km provided I can maintain the pace during the shorter, colder, wetter months – November through February.
That’s the challenge.
I really don’t have any excuses. I’m retired, so have all the time in the world. I have a well equipped, winter road bike – an older full carbon steed with a DuraAce Group and wheel set 😀 And, I have wet and cold weather kits; waterproof rain jacket, booties, and gloves; flannel lined arm and leg warmers; woollen jerseys and cap with integrated ear warmer; a variety of base layers; and soft shell jackets for the cooler but drier weather.
So, instead of heading indoors like I normally do, I’m going to continue cycling outdoors averaging ~800 km per month throughout the winter. It will be a challenge. I have commuted through the winters before but not this distance.
I have a strategy.
I have noticed throughout the years on the the Pacific West Coast at some point on most days there is a dry spell. It usually rains in the morning, and then as the day warms up, the rain subsides, often stopping all together. I’ll wait for these times to minimize the time I actually cycle in the rain. My preferred weather app forecasts the precipitation % throughout the day –
This is the first thing I check while sipping my morning coffee.
And, I’m planning a winter holiday somewhere sunny and warm. A month in the sun. Maybe Arizona or Maui again. This will give me something to look forward to, and keep me motivated during those cold, wet rides.
You my ask why I would want to do this – ride in the Pacific North West winter months. Well, I feel better, both physically and mentally, when I ride every day. I prefer being outside, challenging myself on the hills, and discovering new routes. It sure beats the spinning bike. So, why would I not want to do this?
Join me 😂
It’s a question of willpower and gear. I usually get out 5 or 6 days a week all year, unless there’s snow or ice. Shorter, usually slower rides if it’s very cold. I’m heading towards 8,000 miles (over 12,000km) this year, mainly local with a couple of Sportive and a week in Spain & Portugal. It just becomes a habit to get out, even for a wee bit. I vary things as well by going off-road sometimes, or looking for new routes. Good luck and enjoy yourself.
This is good to hear. If I am not mistaken, you also live in a wet part of the world. Like you, I do a few century rides and travel south in the winter. This year, I hope to spend more time in a warmer, drier climate. That should help 😂
I was planning on hitting 10,000km this year as a target, but I found having a distance target made me choose flatter and faster routes rather than more interesting ones. It also made me less inclined to ride some of the fantastic Tassie climbs. I could still hit 10,000km this year, but it’ll be tight. It’s a good target to aim for though!
In my part of the world, there are no flatter, faster routes 😂Every ride is hilly. This may be a problem as you suggest. I may not feel like heading out when it rains.
Yeah it certainly depends on where you live. I’ve got one “flat” course which skirts the airport. The rest of Tassie is pretty lumpy. I’m contemplating picking an elevation or hours ridden goal for next year rather than distance. Or maybe some other goal?
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