School starts…80 degree mornings turn to 50 degree mornings and the long sleeve jerseys come out of the closet…a weekend trip to the Minneapplecity reveals people are getting their snowmobiles out…and this morning I fetched the tights from a pile of clothing I left behind last April 5.
Raise your hand if you’re riding through winter.
I’ve got a series of posts in mind describing how I keep riding through the winter. Today I’ll start here with how I stay motivated.
For me, staying motivated is very closely related to avoiding getting overly cold on rides. If you’re a geek-boy like me you have geeky ways to manage these things.
This morning’s temperature was a calm 45. I haven’t ridden in 45 degree temperature since April 5. On that day I know exactly what I wore and how comfortable I was when I wore it.
Did I mention I’m a geek?
I keep a list on a spreadsheet: date, temperature, wind direction/speed, windchill, feet, legs, hands, body, head, a perceived comfort scale (-5 to 5) for each body section, and a cumulative perceived comfort scale.
It might be over engineered but here’s how it works. I wake up and learn the temperature is 15 degrees with an east wind of 10mph. Brrrrrr…that’s impossibly cold. I’ll freeze if I ride today. I wonder…
Sure enough, last November 30, 14 degrees and 6mph wind. My perceived comfort shows my feet were -2 and my body was +3. Everything else was 0 (perfectly fine) so with some minor adjustments I think I’ll be able to make it to work without major discomfort. Because I know this…
the temperature is no excuse to not ride today!
PS: the tights were good for 45 degrees this morning but it was 70 when I returned home. I remember thinking I should pack regular shorts for the ride home. I didn't. I rode home in my underwear. Practice, practice, practice.