I didn’t ride outdoors in January, and that makes it the first month with no outdoor riding since January 2014. The weather has to be just right for me to saddle up during the winter. I’m looking for 32° or warmer, and light winds, and sunshine, and clear roads. That’s a tall order around here.
Nothing in the forecast looks attractive at the moment, but I hope to get out a couple of times in February. By mid-March, I should be getting out multiple times per week. My latest start ever was in 2004 when I didn’t ride outside until March 26. I didn’t have the right clothing for cold weather back then. I do now, but it still takes fairly nice conditions to motivate me. And convinced as I am that this will be another year with no racing until autumn—if even then—I am not making any heroic efforts right now.
I often have said that winter rides are more about mental fitness than about physical fitness. Getting outside, especially on a sunny day, is rejuvenating and makes me feel less like I am under house arrest. So far this winter, neighborhood walks and the occasional longer hike have been enough for me … without the risks to body and bike that come from riding in the presence of snow and ice.