Author Topic: January Biking Challenge!!!  (Read 18541 times)

StashinIt

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January Biking Challenge!!!
« on: January 01, 2013, 12:18:38 AM »
Let's ring in 2013 with a ton of miles!

Last month we had 35 riders and a collective 3,726 miles (5,997 km)!

Here's the new spreadsheet:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AvFvGQgkkFLldENOaG5LZlpQSlI3MVduNFEyVDUyRGc

If you contributed miles to the December challenge, you already have a page on the spreadsheet set up for you. Please let me know if you see any errors on the spreadsheet or need some help getting your name on there (for new riders).

So what are you biking goals for the new year? Let's hear it in the comments.

directionseeker

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2013, 02:16:49 AM »
I want to build up to cycle 3 days per week to and from work first half of the year and slowly move to 5 days per week by the end of the year 2013.

Jannie

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2013, 02:21:46 AM »
My car was written off recently and my resolution for the year is not to replace it, so my biking goal is to learn to make biking work well enough for me.

I have had two rides so far and my bottom is sore, but I am committed.

Jannie

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2013, 02:29:55 AM »
Yes please, I would like to be added to the spreadsheet but I'm not sure how to do it.  I biked 6.4km today.

FitStash

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2013, 09:00:14 AM »
I'm shooting for commuting 350 miles for january.

madgeylou

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2013, 09:05:38 AM »
i am getting studded tires and aiming for one day a week!

jwystup

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #6 on: January 01, 2013, 10:13:23 AM »
Bookmarked!

I hope the weather stays like today. Last week (of course on the day we drove home from christmas) we had a bad storm that gave us a lot of snow accumulation. For a few days we didn't really leave the house. It was awesome being off of work during those days. Gotta go back to work tomorrow though and if it stays like it has been the past couple days I will rock the winter riding. Nothing has been coming down, so everything is nicely plowed and melted off the roads. Just checked the weather and we should have some nice days coming up. It'll be cold but as long as there are no blizzards I can handle it :)

I'm still going to dig out my car today, just in case.

Oh and I've moved my bike to inside the house, since our detached garage is way behind our house and behind a fence (not very snow-friendly). There isn't any room to store it on the first floor so it's in the basement. We have pretty narrow basement stairs so this will be interesting...

StashinIt

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #7 on: January 01, 2013, 10:14:57 AM »
Yes please, I would like to be added to the spreadsheet but I'm not sure how to do it.  I biked 6.4km today.

I added a tab for you on the spreadsheet and added your riding. Just fill in the kilometers section and it will do the conversion to miles. Welcome!

General FYI to everyone. If you're not already click on the 4 horizontal bars (next to the 'Master Summary Tab' to easily find your tab. Now that we have a good number of riders finding your tab can be annoying.




kendallf

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #8 on: January 01, 2013, 11:30:00 AM »
I'll try to remember to put mine in here.  I already log my training elsewhere, but I do try to commute quite a bit also.  Florida right now is featuring notably non-badass weather; it was gorgeous this morning and it's probably 70 degrees now that I just got home from riding.

Nancy

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #9 on: January 01, 2013, 06:36:02 PM »
Thanks for setting this up! My goal is to bike at least once a week during January.

yolfer

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #10 on: January 01, 2013, 11:21:24 PM »
Let's ring in 2013 with a ton of miles!

Last month we had 35 riders and a collective 3,726 miles (5,997 km)!

Here's the new spreadsheet:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AvFvGQgkkFLldENOaG5LZlpQSlI3MVduNFEyVDUyRGc

If you contributed miles to the December challenge, you already have a page on the spreadsheet set up for you. Please let me know if you see any errors on the spreadsheet or need some help getting your name on there (for new riders).

So what are you biking goals for the new year? Let's hear it in the comments.

Thank you for setting up this month's challenge! Happy New Year everyone!

YAR

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #11 on: January 02, 2013, 06:09:01 AM »
Thanks for setting up the post for the month! Happy New Year All!

Ottawa

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #12 on: January 02, 2013, 07:52:32 AM »
Thanks stashinit! 
First day of work tomorrow...I don't know if I'm badass enough to bike in the forecasted -23C. Yes that is -9F.  Any fellow ottawans doing it on square tires tomorrow?

mlipps

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #13 on: January 02, 2013, 07:59:46 AM »
It's 1 degree with the wind chill in Chicago today. I'm just not that badass...I went ahead and signed up for employee parking on campus, which is $20 every two weeks, paycheck deducted. Yuck. Hopefully I can push myself enough to bike on days it's more manageable until I cancel the parking in March. I just can't bring myself to ride on the snow & ice that I know is coming.

kythuen

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #14 on: January 02, 2013, 08:11:06 AM »
It was 13F with the wind chill this morning - snow on the ground, but none in the air.  The roads were nice and clear!  My town is all about the plowing. 

My round trip is a tiny 3.2 miles from home to the train station and back again, but my goal is to do it every day the roads are safe.  I dropped out of corporate parking at work, so I don't drive anymore - when I don't bike, I'll have to take the bus to the train.  And I realllllly hate the bus.  So I think I've got a good shot at keeping up with my goal this year.

I'd bike all the way to work and ditch my transit pass - it's really not that far, less than 10m round trip - but so far I haven't found any decent way into downtown Boston from the north. 

Studded tires and fender are on, and all my cold-weather gear seems to be holding up so far.


yolfer

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #15 on: January 02, 2013, 03:11:03 PM »
It's 1 degree with the wind chill in Chicago today. I'm just not that badass...I went ahead and signed up for employee parking on campus, which is $20 every two weeks, paycheck deducted. Yuck. Hopefully I can push myself enough to bike on days it's more manageable until I cancel the parking in March. I just can't bring myself to ride on the snow & ice that I know is coming.

I'm visiting Chicago this week (from Seattle, where it's 47F), and boy is it cold! I walked to the park with the children but I'm not sure if I could ride a bike with this wind chill. My hat goes off to you Chicago natives!

mlipps

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #16 on: January 02, 2013, 03:49:02 PM »
It's 1 degree with the wind chill in Chicago today. I'm just not that badass...I went ahead and signed up for employee parking on campus, which is $20 every two weeks, paycheck deducted. Yuck. Hopefully I can push myself enough to bike on days it's more manageable until I cancel the parking in March. I just can't bring myself to ride on the snow & ice that I know is coming.

I'm visiting Chicago this week (from Seattle, where it's 47F), and boy is it cold! I walked to the park with the children but I'm not sure if I could ride a bike with this wind chill. My hat goes off to you Chicago natives!

Enjoy the windy city!! I'm ready for winter to be over. I miss my bike already, but I just can not deal with this cold.

kendallf

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #17 on: January 02, 2013, 04:03:08 PM »
Is this a bad time to mention that I rode home from work today in shorts and a short sleeved jersey?  :-)

frugalcalan

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #18 on: January 02, 2013, 04:16:06 PM »
It's 1 degree with the wind chill in Chicago today. I'm just not that badass...I went ahead and signed up for employee parking on campus, which is $20 every two weeks, paycheck deducted. Yuck. Hopefully I can push myself enough to bike on days it's more manageable until I cancel the parking in March. I just can't bring myself to ride on the snow & ice that I know is coming.

I'm visiting Chicago this week (from Seattle, where it's 47F), and boy is it cold! I walked to the park with the children but I'm not sure if I could ride a bike with this wind chill. My hat goes off to you Chicago natives!

Apparently I'm more badass than I thought.  I live in Chicago.  I biked 5 miles to work, and realized I forgot to do something important at home.  So I took a 10 mile round trip there during my lunch break.  Once you get going you actually feel very warm!

But then, perhaps I'm just warm blooded.  My boyfriend visited from FL this weekend, and I was pretty amused by our lunch yesterday.  We were sitting in the kitchen, he was in long underwear, jeans, tee shirt, a hoody and socks, and was complaining about the cold.  I was wearing lingerie and some sheepskin slippers and feeling just dandy :p

MrChanticleer

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #19 on: January 02, 2013, 04:37:31 PM »
For January, I plan to bike to work at least once a week. For 2013, my goal is to bike to work at least 52 times. I intended to start this last month, but ended up just biking around town for errands.

madgeylou

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #20 on: January 02, 2013, 05:15:11 PM »
I went for a walk today along the trail I ride to work for 2-2.5 miles from downtown Pittsburgh to my office. I hadn't seen it since we got a bunch of snow around Christmas and it is treacherous. I don't think it's been cleared at all -- it was basically just a solid path of inches-thick ice.

I do not see myself riding on that, even with studded tires. I mean, what if I had to put my foot down and stop? I'd just slide straight into a split!! Yikes.

Here's hoping we get some kind of thaw soon ...

Jannie

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #21 on: January 03, 2013, 02:17:15 AM »
Yes please, I would like to be added to the spreadsheet but I'm not sure how to do it.  I biked 6.4km today.

I added a tab for you on the spreadsheet and added your riding. Just fill in the kilometers section and it will do the conversion to miles. Welcome!

Thanks :)

kythuen

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #22 on: January 03, 2013, 08:27:30 AM »
I have two biking goals.  One is kind of an anti-driving goal.  I want to get by on no more than one tank of gas per month.  That means no driving during the week for me!  And on weekends only for necessities.

My other goal is to only use my bike and the train to get to work.  I live about 3 blocks from a bus stop, and that bus goes to the train station that gets me in to work; my Charlie card (t-pass) is good for both the bus and the train.  In December I managed to never use the bus, and I only drove in one day (for a doctor's appointment, logistically necessary).  In January I want to hit that goal again, minus that one day.

I thought yesterday was cold, at around 15F in the morning when I road in.  Today it was 9F just north of Boston, with wind chill to -5.  YIKES.  But clear and beautiful, and a really nice ride.

Of note, last night I was wearing a pair of gloves that were meant to be all-weather, super-insulated, and of course super-pricy when I bought them.  I thought I was going to lose some fingers.  This morning, 10 degrees colder, I wore my old Target-bought $10 convertible mittens/fingerless gloves.  My hands were never worse than cool.. 
« Last Edit: January 03, 2013, 08:29:34 AM by kythuen »

The_Dude

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #23 on: January 03, 2013, 02:40:25 PM »
Glad to see a January biking challenge!

Most of my Christmas gift ideas people insisted I give them ended up being items I needed for my Bicycle (floor pump, lights and speedometer).

So today I finally rode my bike to work for the first time since college.  Now back in college work was 4 miles away.  Now work is 17 miles away so today's commute will be a 34 mile round trip!

kythuen

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #24 on: January 04, 2013, 09:05:06 AM »
This thread is keeping me honest.  :) 

It was a balmy 27F when I rode in this morning. I almost switched over to my summer bike, but since I haven't prepped it at all, I stayed with the winter studs.  I'll kick the tires and grease the chain this weekend, just in case next week is nice too. 

jwystup

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #25 on: January 04, 2013, 09:38:49 PM »
So...

Rain is nothing (especially with my awesome *rain pants*)
I don't feel the cold in my bundled-up state
I can handle the snow we've had so far
I can even handle small lengths of ice as long as I can anticipate them, but...

How the hell do you guys bike against the WINNDDDD??? I was absolutely dying by the time I got to work on Wednesday with almost-20mph winds in my face plus all of the cold making my lungs mad. I drove today, it was closer to 30mph woulda-been-in-my-face winds and I felt a little crappy so I was NOT up for it. The wind is in my face on the way to work about 90% of the time and pushes me home the same amount, since it's usually coming off of the lake.

So, is there a cutoff where you would say no to biking in a certain speed of wind? I am by no means aerodynamic with my heavy commuter bike and super sexy outfit of a giant winter coat and other warmnesses. Oh, and I think gusts were up to 50mph today and apparently there was an airplane that got turned 90 degrees trying to take off. It was windy.

kythuen

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #26 on: January 05, 2013, 01:16:17 PM »
So, is there a cutoff where you would say no to biking in a certain speed of wind?

When I was biking the Lakeshore multi-use path to work in Chicago, my rule of thumb was - when you start rolling backwards, take the bus.  :)

GuitarStv

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #27 on: January 05, 2013, 01:42:50 PM »
Anything above 50 kph headwinds pretty much makes biking a non-starter for me.  At that point it's probably faster to walk.  A decent balaclava is essential for windy days too.

YAR

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #28 on: January 07, 2013, 11:00:32 AM »
Welp I had my first negative experience with bike commuting today. I ride a wooded asphalt "bike" trail that crosses a river for a short stretch of my daily commute. It is usually quite nice, however, this morning is was a giant sheet of black ice. I bit the dust at about 16 mph about halfway down the hill. I rode the brakes pretty hard but it didn't matter. Overall though my pride is hurt more than my person. I have a nice new hole in my jacket, a nicely skinned elbow and a nice size bump on my hip. Oh well, live and learn, right?

jpluncford21

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #29 on: January 07, 2013, 12:01:14 PM »
I'm aiming for biking to work and back every day that my wife is off, which means I'm not taking the little one to day care. It's already helping us save money in this new year!

kythuen

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #30 on: January 07, 2013, 12:06:24 PM »
It's going to be a warm week in Boston -- 34F-45F and sunny every day.  I've switched back to my summer bike, no studded tires and no fenders.  I've missed it!  It's so much lighter than the winter mountain bike. 

Today I didn't even bother with a jacket, just thermals and a t-shirt.  Plus gloves, of course!  Crazy, that 34 degrees warrants a "summer bike", right?  But I guess it's all in what you can get used to.

mlipps

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #31 on: January 07, 2013, 12:39:32 PM »
It's going to be a warm week in Boston -- 34F-45F and sunny every day.  I've switched back to my summer bike, no studded tires and no fenders.  I've missed it!  It's so much lighter than the winter mountain bike. 

Today I didn't even bother with a jacket, just thermals and a t-shirt.  Plus gloves, of course!  Crazy, that 34 degrees warrants a "summer bike", right?  But I guess it's all in what you can get used to.

Definitely busting mine out this week too. And, we rode bikes to the grocery store this weekend instead of driving. Just have to get used to the weird center of gravity on my bike w/my milk crate on the back...

GuitarStv

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #32 on: January 07, 2013, 05:33:51 PM »
If you get some hooks and bungees from the hardware store, you can mount your milk crates like panniers on the side of your rack. . . Lower centre of gravity doesn't want to fall over as much as long as you keep the weight more of less balanced.

Rangifer

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #33 on: January 07, 2013, 09:10:40 PM »
Alright, Im in!

Put some street tires on the mountain bike and going to start commuting and riding for fun.

jpo

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #34 on: January 09, 2013, 12:38:05 PM »
My goal for 2013 is to bike to work every day except:
  • When it rains
  • When it is below 30F
  • When I am carpooling
  • When I am sick
  • When I have to carry my computer

Also to bike on more errands, primarily to the grocery store.

StashinIt

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #35 on: January 09, 2013, 03:20:50 PM »
When I have to carry my computer

Desktop commuter? Come on now! ;-)


TheDude

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #36 on: January 09, 2013, 04:00:21 PM »
Awesome 3 days this weekend in Colorado . It was 40 F on Tuesday morning. Going to miss this spring type weather on Friday.

kythuen

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #37 on: January 09, 2013, 07:21:43 PM »
It was lovely here too - plenty warm enough to skip the hat and gloves. It's likely to be warm all week - I'm excited!

jpo

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #38 on: January 10, 2013, 08:02:11 AM »
When I have to carry my computer

Desktop commuter? Come on now! ;-)
Laptop... I tried it once and it was fairly awful. I don't have panniers so it goes in the backpack. Complainypants I know, but I'm still easing into the bike commuting thing.

yolfer

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #39 on: January 10, 2013, 12:59:24 PM »
Laptop... I tried it once and it was fairly awful. I don't have panniers so it goes in the backpack. Complainypants I know, but I'm still easing into the bike commuting thing.

You'll get used to it. I leave mine at work most nights so I don't have to shlep it back and forth. I bought a nice laptop sleeve to protect it in my backpack. Pretty pricy but I figured it was a good investment, and it's lasted me 3+ years. Look for one with padding under the zipper since that's normally a weakness.

jpo

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #40 on: January 11, 2013, 06:21:49 AM »
Laptop... I tried it once and it was fairly awful. I don't have panniers so it goes in the backpack. Complainypants I know, but I'm still easing into the bike commuting thing.
You'll get used to it. I leave mine at work most nights so I don't have to shlep it back and forth. I bought a nice laptop sleeve to protect it in my backpack. Pretty pricy but I figured it was a good investment, and it's lasted me 3+ years. Look for one with padding under the zipper since that's normally a weakness.
The backpack I have has a padded section for laptops, right against my back. 90% of the time I leave mine at work as well, but occasionally I'll have to be on call and take it with me.

kendallf

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #41 on: January 11, 2013, 07:32:49 PM »
I have a rule that nothing goes on my back, the bike carries everything.  I've tried backpacks, and bought my wife a couple of hip messenger bags that she uses, but they overheat me and make my back ache over any distance.

Get a good rack and a set of panniers and you can carry a laptop, change of clothes, etc. etc., no problem.

GuitarStv

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #42 on: January 12, 2013, 05:04:10 PM »
Wow . . . weather up to 13 (55.4 for Celsius challenged individuals) degrees today.  Sure a lot nicer biking than in the snow, grit, rain, and salt that we've had lately.  I didn't even wear a jacket or hat!

yomimono

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #43 on: January 13, 2013, 12:08:17 PM »
I travel to Austin for work every couple of months, and I keep a bike there to get around.  HOLY CRAP was it ever amazing to ride bicycles without a balaclava, two pairs of gloves, and moon boots.

Paul der Krake

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #44 on: January 13, 2013, 12:15:22 PM »
Went for a spin yesterday, 25 miles in 70+ weather. Bliss.

kythuen

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #45 on: January 16, 2013, 09:05:49 AM »
That was awesome!

I woke up this morning to a text from my room mate, who leaves before I wake up - "Snow!  Take the bus!" So of course there was no way I wasn't biking in after that.

Outside, my neighbor was shoveling his driveway.  He laughed and said, "S said you were going to do that!  She said she told you not to!"  I said, "Well, that's mainly why I'm doing it!"  He wished me luck, and off I went. 

30F, snowing pretty hard, lots of snow on the ground/roads.  Switched back to winter bike with the studded tires, the first time I actually NEEDED them, and put the fenders on, too.  That was a blast!  My first ever real snow-ride.  I stayed pretty toasty in my snow sneakers, Target special glovemittens, and bright purple coat.  :)  One spot got a little fish-taily and I got splashed a few times - this was a pretty wet snow.  But overall it was really just a lot of fun.

Hardest part was at the train station, getting all the snow off me and the bike and my backpack.  It took a little longer to actually get inside than it usually does.  I looked like a bright purple abominable snow-person.  :)

GuitarStv

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #46 on: January 16, 2013, 10:12:40 AM »
Snow riding is fun . . . there's this terrible magical temperature around freezing where all the snow sticks to you, your bike, and everything that can get kinda miserable.  Sounds like you were hitting around that mark.  Just make sure to hose the bike down and lube up when you get home . . . because that snow melts and turns into gritty/salty mud that makes your bike sound awfully squeaky/grindey otherwise.

This morning on my commute (-7 C, 19 F) I finally figured out a technique to deal with the high winds on a mountain bike:
- Take one arm and lean just above the elbow on your handlebars so your hand is sticking straight in front of you, and your head is about an inch off the stem.
- Keep your other hand next to the break, but tuck your elbow in under your chest.

You still have a little control over the bike in case of hitting potholes with the one hand, and can brake if necessary . . . but get about 90% of the benefits of being in the drops on a road bike.  Shaved a few minutes off the commute with this technique!

kythuen

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #47 on: January 16, 2013, 01:16:41 PM »
Good advice, GuitarStv!  I'm way more confident with biking than I am with bike maintenance, but you have to learn sometime, right?

And yeah, the snow was just wet enough to crust, which made everything just that more interesting.  :) 

kendallf

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #48 on: January 16, 2013, 06:07:04 PM »
Once again, kudos to all of you in the snow and ice!  You encourage me for the dreaded 10 or so days when our temps drop to 32 in the morning.  It was 80 here in Jacksonville for my ride home today.  :-)

Ottawa

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Re: January Biking Challenge!!!
« Reply #49 on: January 17, 2013, 06:21:16 AM »
Riding in cold weather is just physical; but mainly psychological adaptation...and appropriate clothing certainly helps here!  As long as you continue biking as the temperatures get colder it is not big deal.  This is my first year of winter biking inspired by Mustachianism.  The previous 6 winters I lived through in Ottawa I stopped biking immediately at the first sign of snow or heavy frost (i.e. November) then started again when the last lingering snow piles retreated (April). 

It has taken a bit to dial down the appropriate clothing depending on temperature and wind chill ranges.  I find overheating to be the most frequent problem!  I always get a kick out of people shivering in their cars at a stoplight and looking at me like I'm strange! 

For instance today, while not too bad at -12C, was quite windy (windchill of -19C).  Today was an outer windproof shell day to keep the wind from mercilessly sucking away precious body heat...but then on arrival at work I can't get the stuff off fast enough - as it's not particularly breatheable and I start sweating almost immediately!

I would suggest that cycling in the heat has its challenges too!  For me the summer here, while glorious, leaves you drenched in sweat no matter what you wear (no shower at work). 

Good on everyone for biking wherever they are.  In particular I commend anyone who has started biking that didn't - or that has extended their biking seasons into previously off limits weather.