Christmas and New Year

There’s something nice about the familiar – especially over Christmas when routine gets turned on its head! A Monday evening would not be the same without a gentle leg rotate on the turbo torturer, and this week was no exception.
However never wanting to miss an opportunity to get on my bike, Tuesday’s turbo session was replaced with a ride to the garden centre. I had to get something for my sister, and why take the car!? Taking a detour home, I voluntarily did a couple of hills and felt good for the blast out. The roads were pretty empty (apart from a pretty hairy moment where some cretin overtook me on a narrow stretch) and relatively dry. Getting out on the bike beats sitting on the indoor trainer hands down every time – it always puts me in a great mood.
Christmas Eve soon disappeared with plenty of last-minute things to do, although I did manage to squeeze in a nice afternoon beer with a cycling chum. We chewed the fat and put the world to rights. If you can’t do it at Christmas when can you!

The big day arrived and thankfully I was spared the task of cooking with an invite to my parents’ house for lunch. I mustered the motivation to cycle there on the basis that it was (a) a good thing to do before a big meal and (b) the last change I’d have to ride for a while with my ski trip looming! My Christmas Day morning ride proved to be great fun; with very little traffic to speak of I covered the 22.5 miles in an hour and a quarter, with an average speed of 17.7mph. Whilst I was pretty pleased with my effort, I ruined it with a huge quantity of rich food, washed down with fine wine.
In the wake of too much turkey and red wine, skiing in Austria was a perfect escape. It was lovely out there – the hotel was great as was the skiing – however cold outdoor weather combined with roasting indoor temperatures provided to be ideal conditions for whatever virus I managed to catch! 2015 started with a sneeze and a cough, rendering me useless for training. Even going upstairs leaves me out of breath – how inconvenient!

That said, I still have a couple of months before the big hill climb, so I can afford a few days off. After weeks of weighing up what to do with the bike situation, the balance is swinging in favour of taking my own rather than renting. That way I can practice on some of the roads in Maui before heading out for the ‘big one’. I am actually quite excited by the prospect of exploring parts of Maui by bike.
With a New Year comes the traditional resolutions, and in a bid to lose a few kilos before March I’ve embarked on a new diet. But don’t worry, I’m not talking about any fad diet – this one is great because I get to eat every few hours. However I have cut out alcohol, dairy and caffeine and replaced it with 3 litres of water a day. My kidneys don’t know what’s hit them!