Sunday, November 18, 2012
The Shoulder Season: Catching my Breath While Planning Ahead.
I do so enjoy the cyclical nature of the calendar. Perhaps this is one of the reasons why I find working in schools so comforting. It's also why I'll likely never be able to leave the Northeast where the rhythm of the seasons is predictable, provides variation and allows for built-in reminders to rest and rejuvenate before heading off into another period of training and adventure.
In the waning months of fall, I alternate between enjoying short bursts of riding with periods of planning and rest. Ever since the RUSA calendar was published last October, I've been toying with event options for 2013. The shorter, cooler days of fall also align well with my body's need for rest after a long, hard season.
I'm quite pleased with my accomplishments in 2012. In June, I completed my first R-12, having worked hard to maintain the consistency of monthly long rides that has eluded me in the past. The exceptionally mild winter helped to be sure. I am also very pleased to have completed my first Super Randonneur season since my 2010 accident. With each successful event, I became more confident in my ability to perform as a competent randonneur. While I was disappointed with my speed and climbing agility throughout the season, I look forward to making solid improvements in both areas next year.
So looking ahead to 2013, my largest goal will be to complete a 1200K with strength, speed and determination. As always, my work schedule is marked by feast and famine. Unable to take extended time away from school except when classes are not in session, there are three domestic 1200K events available to me next year: the Gold Rush Randonnee, the Big Wild Ride and the Endless Mountains 1240K.
For a variety of reasons, largely based on our family's summer schedule, I've chosen to ride in the Gold Rush Randonnee in late June. With my sister and several good friends living in San Francisco, the trip West will bring fun and adventure on several levels.
So I'll continue to enjoy the upcoming week of rest before ramping up my 2013 base training immediately following Thanksgiving.