It should surprise no one that I'm a goal-driven person. I don't always achieve my goals, but I really enjoy the process of setting a goal, working towards achieving it, and the self-reflection that follows regardless of whether I achieve or don't achieve the goal. This past year, I was looking for a new goal besides an annual mileage target. In addition to my annual mileage target, I decided I would also try to ride for thirty consecutive days.
2017 has been a blur. I haven't necessarily prioritized things that bring me joy this year, including writing on this site (my last post was 01 Jan). I'm conscious about the lack of balance, and that's why I took a much needed mental health day. Taking a mental health day can only mean thing for me - a long bike ride. Today's destination was Mt. Baker. It's been three years since I last rode Baker, so another visit was overdue. And, to make this mental health day even more special, six of my friends were also taking a mental health day.
Since 2010, Rapha has been challenging me (and thousands of others) to ride 500km over the last eight days of the year (between Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve). I've always wondered if I could complete the challenge, but I've never seriously attempted it. That is, until this year...
In the back of my head, I should have expected it to happen. I know I'm fatigued. As I swung my leg over my bike and started turning over the pedals, I was immediately lulled into a semi-conscious state by the sound of rain bouncing off my rain jacket. It didn't help that my bike light was creating the same hypnotizing effect as when the USS Enterprise hurtled through space at warp speed. Just as I was telling myself to snap out of it, a tree branch appeared in the foreground.
I am really lucky to have friends in many different disciplines that possess amazing talent in their field. In the photography field, one such friend is José Mandojana. He's the guy who you can give any type of camera to and he'll make an amazing photograph. When he recently asked if I was interested in getting up ridiculously early to go make some photographs, of course I said YES!
It all started innocently enough. About eighteen months ago, I found myself becoming more interested in pursuing a different type of riding rather than just commuting, fitness rides on the weekend, and the occasional cyclocross race. I had started noticing more images and stories of bikepacking, ultralight touring, etc. in my feeds and my interest was piqued. "This is exactly the thing I'm craving," I thought to myself. And so it began.
I’m lucky to have friends as crazy as I am – who will ride in the dark for the majority of our ride week in and week out and often in the rain and wind. These are the hard miles. They test your soul. They wear you down.
For the past few years, I've analyzed my cycling data and compiled an annual report. While I did the annual report for fun, I learned a lot through the process too. At the end of 2014, I decided to use my past data to set a 2015 riding goal. (3,600 miles and a 4,000 stretch goal). As 2015 nears to a close, I check in on my progress.
I've always enjoyed riding in the morning. I'm sure being a morning person plays a role, but there is something special about riding before the sun rises. For me, riding early has helped build a special connection with my city.
In case you missed it, Sir Bradley Wiggins set a new hour record on Sunday. Leading up to Sunday's event, cyclists around the world took up the mission to ride their own hour in support of Wiggins' attempt. Following is my recount from our #MyHour ride
with signs of spring come annual traditions like spring cleaning. i love spring cleaning. sometimes, the process of spring cleaning rekindles a romance with the things i own. this past weekend, i was going through some of my cycling stuff and i came across some old Rapha caps. three caps in particular caught my eye as they just happen to be my favorite caps Rapha has made (to date).