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Old 01-15-06, 04:31 PM   #1
FarHorizon
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Winter sluggishness

I find that about this time every year, I get into a "don't want to do much" funk and slack off on my riding/running. I don't know if it's the bear in me trying to hibernate, if the loss of sunlight turns down my metabolism, or if I'm just plain lazy.

How do you all stay motivated when the days are not only overcast but also cool, and your body wants to be a couch potato?
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Old 01-15-06, 04:36 PM   #2
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I'm not an expert but what I've read it encourages "taking a break" over the winter to allow the body to completely recover. For me, just try and get out and do some different things to try and keep my weight from ballooning.

I think it's okay to take a break and wait for the enthusiasm to return.......
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Old 01-15-06, 04:52 PM   #3
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I'm still too new to be unmotivated perhaps, but I think I know what you mean...

Right now, I'm about to squeeze ten miles in because it will be dark soon but the rain has abated. Yet the winds will be a force, no doubt. I'll do the ride because I know how I'll feel when I'm done. And because I can log it on BikeJournal.com. And because at the end of the day I know I'll have done at least one little thing that's good for me.

Tomorrow's a holiday in the U.S. and there's a million work-related things I should/could do. Maybe I'll seize that opportunity, or maybe I'll just take the bike over to Coronado and see if I can get in a half century.

My biggest problem is how early it gets dark. I'm NOT, NOT, NOT a morning person. I'm so not a morning person. Not only that, I don't like mornings.

I guess I'm not helping much. Better go ride.
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Old 01-15-06, 04:57 PM   #4
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Ride a few for me, DG! I'm going to eat some seafood gumbo, soak in a hot bathtub, and watch a movie on the wall with my video projector. Maybe I'll move tomorrow...
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Old 01-15-06, 04:59 PM   #5
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Came back to add one little thing which is going to sound weird.

I live in an area where year-round riding is taken for granted. Yes, we get some rain but that just slows us down for a bit. Otherwise, it's sunny and at least moderate temperatures.

Sometimes, when I'm feeling a bit sluggish and demotivated, I realize there are people in the northeast and midwest and lots of other places who would love to trade places to get in a ride, and so I remind myself how lucky I am, and I make myself take advantage of where I am, and I get out there and ride.

So, sometimes, I'm riding for those who are snowbound! (No need to thank me, PastorBob et al; just send pie!)
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Old 01-15-06, 05:06 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Digital Gee
...Sometimes, when I'm feeling a bit sluggish and demotivated, I realize there are people in the northeast and midwest and lots of other places who would love to trade places to get in a ride, and so I remind myself how lucky I am...
Great point. I also have the advantage of year-round riding climate. I'll get out tomorrow for sure. Thanks for something that worked!
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Old 01-15-06, 05:34 PM   #7
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Lots of us here up north ride anyway...but still envy you folks the good weather you enjoy this time of year. It is much harder to get up in the morning and throw on tons of clothing, drive 30 miles to the park-n-ride, get out of a nice warm truck to pull down my bike and throw all the gear on it, then freeze for the first few minutes of the ride... but by the first mile I am so glad that I am riding rather that still sitting in that truck and fighting the rush hour traffic. But that's not my only motivation

When I first got this job a couple years ago I got lazy that first winter, using the distance and the weather as an excuse not to ride. I ballooned up to 250lbs and ended up in the hospital with pancreaitis - so there is my main motivation, I ride to live!

It's also nice to know that when the warm weather comes and all the fair-weather roadies come out in droves, at least for the first part of the season I get the evil satisfaction of seeing the look on their faces when some fred on a bike with fenders, handlebar bag, saddlebag and panniers passes and drops them.
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Old 01-15-06, 05:41 PM   #8
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What are you nuts! You live in Louisiana. This is the good time of year for cycling. If I lived there, I would be putting on the miles in the winter, and being lethargic in the hot sweltering summer heat.

By contrast, today in Minnesota was wonderful. It was in the mid thirties and sunny blue skies. I went for a nice long ride. Only issue is all the sand and crud on the roads. Oh well. I spent an extra half hour today cleaning and waxing my bikes.
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Old 01-15-06, 05:57 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chipcom
It's also nice to know that when the warm weather comes and all the fair-weather roadies come out in droves, at least for the first part of the season I get the evil satisfaction of seeing the look on their faces when some fred on a bike with fenders, handlebar bag, saddlebag and panniers passes and drops them.

You just helped my motivation for this winter!! After hearing that I wish I put in a few more miles today!!
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Old 01-15-06, 06:04 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by squeakywheel
By contrast, today in Minnesota was wonderful. It was in the mid thirties and sunny blue skies. I went for a nice long ride. Only issue is all the sand and crud on the roads. Oh well. I spent an extra half hour today cleaning and waxing my bikes.
MN native here too Squeakywheel! Isn't this weather something? Linda and I got our for the THIRD time in the last 8 days. Last year, we didn't get out at all in January. Looks llike more days in the 30s next week too

You're right about the salt though. Our bikes are covered with this gray powder. I've always thought we use way too much of the stuff. There were literally PILES of the stuff in some of the bike lanes on the roads here.

Oh... the wind was a bit much at times too. Overall though, for a January, I'll take it!

Take care,

Steve
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Old 01-15-06, 06:24 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FarHorizon
I find that about this time every year, I get into a "don't want to do much" funk and slack off on my riding/running. I don't know if it's the bear in me trying to hibernate, if the loss of sunlight turns down my metabolism, or if I'm just plain lazy.

How do you all stay motivated when the days are not only overcast but also cool, and your body wants to be a couch potato?
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Old 01-15-06, 10:26 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by squeakywheel
...today in Minnesota was wonderful. It was in the mid thirties and sunny blue skies.
I was thinking of coming to St. Paul later this month for the ice festival. Is it still on? Will it be worth coming for this year? I've never been.
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Old 01-15-06, 10:28 PM   #13
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...Are you out of your mind?
Denver - you've known me a year now. You have to ASK?!?!?
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Old 01-15-06, 10:41 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FarHorizon
I was thinking of coming to St. Paul later this month for the ice festival. Is it still on? Will it be worth coming for this year? I've never been.
I don't know. I've never paid much attention to it.
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Old 01-15-06, 11:58 PM   #15
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I missed 21 days in a row in December because of snow and overtime. I snowplow.

I woke up late this morning 8 AM but it was enough time to get in 13 miles before church.
Then my daughter wanted to ride down to the park to feed the geese. That added 3 more miles.

If the weather is good I am pumped. I have no desire to ride in snow or ice. My eyes can't handle the wind when its below freezing. I have to slow down to about 10mph or slower.
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Old 01-16-06, 01:45 AM   #16
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I am lucky in that we can ride all year round in my area. It may be wet or a little bit cold and on rare occasions too hot to sensibly get out there for a mornings work.

I do have mornings where a ride is planned and I do not want to to do it. Force myself to get on the bike and take an easy ride. Within 5 miles I am back. Looking for the harder route- if I can talk the others into it- or trying to get the pace upped a bit to get to the cafe for breakfast before the masses arrive.

My motivation this year has been to get down to the gym in the week. I hate that sitting on a machine and going nowhere.(Do enjoy the sauna afterwards though) Even that has been changed as a set of lights and we are night riding.
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Old 01-16-06, 04:56 AM   #17
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During the winter months I try to ride when the weather and available daylight permits. I also have started going to the local gym this year and doing some cardio and weight training. Just mixing things up a little. That keeps me off the couch.
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Old 01-16-06, 04:57 PM   #18
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Every year I swear that I am going to continue to ride through November and December, but every year the demands of the holidays really screw it up for me. I have put in a little over 100 miles in the last 8 days and plan to arrange my spare time around exercising enough to get the extra weight off and do a century in March.

I lived the first 36 years of my life in Kentucky and really suffered through the winter months. It was dark and gloomy most of the time and there was really nothing to look forward to. I took up skiing a couple of years before moving away from Kentucky and learned that having something to look forward to in the winter really helped keep me out of my funk. I got transfered to Florida and couldn't ski enough to make it worthwhile but I can ride year round here. That, and a daily dose of Prozac, have helped immensely.
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Old 01-16-06, 07:58 PM   #19
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I too have the winter sluggishness. The holidays really interupted my riding and now there are several business trips coming up. This weekend and the next two weekends are spoken for with other commitments. It's just been a tough go With all of these schedule interruptions it's hard to get motivated to get out there when you know that in one, two or three days the schedule will be disrupted again. I just got back from being away this weekend and now the forecast is calling for showers tonight and tomorrow morning. I ride in the rain in any season but winter it makes me too cold.
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