Welp, the year-long chain of self-checks begin here, man --- time for public accountability!
Week One: yeah, it's Friday, and technically in my new plan the weekends that follow are still part of the week in question - if that makes sense: ok, the weeks run Monday to Sunday for cycling purposes. So, I have ridden to work now Monday and Wednesday this week, and will probably go outside for a cold 10-12 mile spin to test out the new tires in the next two days.
Flurries are expected tomorrow, so maybe Sunday. No longer concerned with the cold temperatures -- fully acclimated again, and have suffered thru the first two days on the bike by being UNDER-dressed for the conditions on the rides home each evening. Miserable headwinds and cold, moist air made the evening portions of these two commutes especially brutal -- but I survived. Wednesday, the new-tire purchase was prompted by a flat tire (usually is) - but it may have been a "panic-purchase". The Pasela TGs have done GREAT, in a myriad of conditions, but I think I'm saving them for brevets, simply to not have to worry about flats at all, especially during the winter. Wednesday's flat tire was a sharp rock chip that worked it's way into the tube, but the tire - in Panaracer's defense - had 2500+ miles on it, was quite flat and thin in the middle where the rock chip worked thru, and winter here is especially bad because of the nature of the material they treat the roads with - which, has a lot of rock chips and sand in it. The chances of this kind of flat go WAY up, and so here was my first flat in a WHILE. This time, however, the wind was cold and the hands were cold, and upon flipping the bike over to better-access the rear wheel, I accidentally dropped the front end and proceeded to try and recover the blunder by grabbing hte first thing I could - which this time was the outer chainring, sans-chain. Nice move. 7 puncture wounds and a lacerated pinkie-finger later I've elected to make THAT flat tire my LAST winter flat. I'll put the Pasela's back on ater the first spring storms wash the roads clear of all this crud. Until then, a pair of heavy-but-sturdy Schwalbe Marathon-Plus tires will take their place. As I type this, careful not to double-hit keys with my excessive bandaging on my left hand, I remind myself that the extra weight is TOTALLY worth it.
Week two begins Monday, Jan 29th, putting the countdown timer on the first 200K brevet at 5 weeks. wow. ONLY five weeks and I'll be riding 125 miles -- that first one, as Thursby quipped this afternoon, is gonna HURT. (Was good to run into you today, by the way). Week two will be the first major step - besides week one, of course - towards being more ready than I am as I type this. Week Two: 74 miles, probably divided between three commutes to work, and a very short weekend run of 4 or 5 miles. Very short - almost not worth it, but it will help the training, so I'll make it a FAST five miles and hope to count it as a positive step back towards speed-training again later on this spring.
I've got a pretty good list of goals posted now, for more public accountability, including one non-cycling goal, the endurance portion of which the sysling SHOULD take care of: I'll post those goals here, too - just for fun and ridicule! Enjoy!
(Oh yeah - that's not my hand, by the way. Thank goodness.)