So far I have ridden 108.5 miles in December (most in the past week). I have a few more days to go and at least two more planned rides. On December 26th I rode 55 miles of the Chief Ladiga Trail in Alabama with my friend Ashley. It was cold but we survived fine, even though there were icicles on rocks we passed and a few patches of ice. I was happy with the time – 3:33 – and we were about 15 minutes faster coming back than going out. There was quite a bit of debris on the trail including the couple of patches of ice so we had to be careful not to hit things that would cause flats.
On the Alabama side the trail runs through mostly rural areas with a few towns and crossroads. It is quite peaceful and we only saw a few other people out, 4-5 on bikes and a few walkers who were bundled up in layers and coats. We rode to the Georgia state line and then back to our starting point in Jacksonville, AL.
I wondered how many miles I had ridden in 2013. I am somewhat of a data geek, like most triathletes, but I don’t have perfect records of all my workouts. Still I found that I logged 1248 miles on my bike according to my Garmin records. That means I probably logged somewhere around 1500 total and I have a few days to go.
It is pretty satisfying to look through my rides and see my progress over the past year. Even more so over the past few years. When I was riding with Ashley yesterday I couldn’t help but recall the first cold December ride that I was on three years ago. I did not have gloves and was not really dressed right. It was my very first ride on the hybrid that I had purchased in the fall but just had not gotten around to ride. I really had no clue how to shift or much else. But I rode with good people that day and they all helped me get started and have helped me since. Tomorrow I will be out on the road with some of them again for a year end ride. So, I will add a few more miles to my total in the last days of 2013. Riding, one of my joys in life.