A blog for (semi) athletic middle-aged men (and women) holding on to (the last vestiges of) their youth
by training for and competing in running, cycling, swimming and triathlon events!


Sunday, January 4, 2009

New Year, New Challenges, a New Post!

Let me start 2009 with an apology to my faithful readers. Sorry Mom...Denise...Leslie. I haven't been very diligent in my blogging of late. For some reason I just haven't been very motivated to write. Maybe it's because I haven't had any grand adventures to write about.

Sure, I've been to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan and Lansing, Michigan, but the weather was so cold I never left the hotel. And the holidays have been pretty quite. The furthest we traveled for Thanksgiving or Christmas was 30 miles down I-25 to Colorado Springs! I'm not complaining...really. I've enjoyed the break from hotels, rental cars and airports.

But I'm back on the road this week. Ames, Iowa, to be exact. Might as well be the North Pole. Everything is covered in a sheet of ice. Temps in the single digits. It wouldn't be so bad except that I'm a little spoiled after we had temps in the 60s this past week in Denver. A brief glimpse of spring in the middle of winter.

I was able to get my bike out on the road (twice) after many hours on the indoor trainer. I know the trainer is good cardio, but it's no substitute for getting out on the road, which is why I ride. Of course when you ride on the road you have to share the road with cars.

In fact, there are signs up and down the road reminding cyclists to "Share the Road" with our four-wheeled friends. It's a good reminder for me, especially, after I was accused by Officer Friendly of the Castle Rock Police Department of failing to yield the right of way to the car that turned right in front of me (fortunately for me, Officer Friendly misinterpreted Colorado Law...turns out that the law requires cars to make sure they can safely negotiate a right turn without hitting pedestrians or cyclists).

To remind Colorado drivers of the law, Bicycle Colorado designed a new "Share the Road" cycling jersey that offers some great tips for cars, reminding them to "Pass With Care," with three yellow bars indicating that Colorado State law requires drivers to keep at least three feet between their multi-ton hunk of metal and my 18 pound carbon bicycle. And reflective piping helps cars see me on the road (as if I could hide my 6'4" frame sitting atop my XL Cannondale Synapse Carbon 3 bike).

I got my new "Share the Road" jersey for Christmas and wore it on my two rides this past week. It's my new favorite jersey (thanks, Denise!) .

I'm getting anxious for the upcoming "season" -- Elephant Rock, Ride the Rockies, and, hopefully, another Ironman 70.3 triathlon. After taking last season off from triathlons following my encounter with a car in September 2007 and ensuing surgery on my collarbone in March 2008, I am ready to tackle a new challenge in 2009.

I'm not ready to try a full Ironman yet. Actually, Leslie has politely requested (for those of you who know Leslie, you know what that means) that I wait a few years -- until the girls are both off to college -- before I commit the time it takes to train for a full Ironman. That's 2014. For those of you who are counting, I'll be fifty years old by then!

What the heck. Doing a full Ironman the year I turn 50 sounds like a good goal. Besides, I've never even run a full marathon (which is the final leg of a full Ironman), so I suppose I'd better find out if I can do that first. First up is the Denver Marathon in October '09 with brother Evan and Williams cousins Brian and Nathan.

But first I need to pick out an Ironman 70.3 for this summer. I could do the Vineman again. It would be interesting to compete against my time in 2007 (6:27:43) and try to break six hours. But I might want to try a new venue. I may join a group of other "powered by beef" athletes at the Boise 70.3. Only problem is that it will be held June 13 -- the same day they kick of Ride the Rockies. I really want to do RTR again this year, to make it five in a row. And then there's the fact that I haven't swam seriously since the Vineman!

Forget New Year's resolutions...I prefer New Year's challenges!

Ride one...

Daren

5 comments:

  1. Glad you are back and blogging. I have missed your updates! Lookin' good in that jersey! :)

    Denise

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  2. What do you mean "for those of you who know Leslie..."!! BBT!

    Leslie

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  3. I, too, was eager to hear "what you are thinking" these days! Now I know that you, Evan, Nathan, and Brian are planning a marathon run in Denver this coming fall! Keep up the training -- I've got to get back on my stationary bike starting tonight!!!!

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  4. Add me to the list of Denver Marathon runners!

    Kevin

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  5. I'm a cyclist from Castle Rock too. I have too have been hastled by CR's finest lately for bogus things. I have share the road plates and ride these roads everyweek. So when the officer accused my of riding on the wrong side of the road based on 2nd hand info from a motorist, I was livid. I argued with the cop for 20 minutes and came pretty close to getting thrown in jail....over nothing!!!

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