Friday, March 31, 2017

Worst March Ever?

Was this the worst March ever? I could make that case. I did only 6 rides. I logged only 158 miles, my lowest total since 2008. And back in 2008 I wasn’t as prepared for cold weather as I am now, so it’s not even a fair comparison. This month had snow, rain, and high winds in abundance:

  • 16 days at or below 40° (9 of which were at or below 32°)
  • 14 days with measurable rain and/or snow
  • 29 days with double-digit wind speeds
  • 26 days with wind gusts in excess of 20 mph (52 mph on March 8!)

Good riddance.

I’m going into April with 563 miles, year-to-date, compared to 620 miles last year. That’s not much of a difference, but I don’t think I’m nearly as fit as I was this time last year. March wrecked the momentum I had built with a better-than-average January and an all-time-great February. And the biggest problem is still one whose resolution is nowhere on the horizon: all of the mountain bike trails remain closed. New Fane, Greenbush, Pleasant Valley, Minooka, Alpine Valley, CamRock, Silver Lake … they’re all too wet to ride. It’s not just the frequent rain; it’s also the nearly complete absence of sunshine. There is no consolation in the knowledge that the mountain bike trails are closed to everyone. Most of my racing rivals are better technical riders, and whatever success I have against them comes from greater fitness. I expect my fitness to improve dramatically over the next month. But greater fitness doesn’t guarantee success in competition. I need to sharpen my skills. In April I will take as much time on singletrack as I can get.

The slag heap we call Glacial Blue Hills likely will be the first trail system available to me—maybe by next weekend if the current forecast proves true—and I guess I’ll make peace with it even though I don’t enjoy riding there. Part of my prejudice against Glacial Blue Hills is that it isn’t a race course, so training there feels like a waste of time when I could be training on trails that I will race later. I literally would rather drive the 75 miles to CamRock than the 5.5 miles to Glacial Blue Hills, but that’s a moot point right now. Glacial Blue Hills does have technical trails and long-ish climbs, and maybe that’s what I need but it’s not what I want. I want to rip through New Fane and the Brown County Reforestation Camp.

Looks like April is going to be all about the work. I trust the fun will show up later.

1 comment:

  1. My worst March as well after my all time record February. I've been going to a gym since December so that's helped but my legs are tired after 34 miles today.