Monday, December 04, 2006

Tough Guy

-4 C this morning.

I was considering leaving the bike at home and taking transit instead. I didn't get a lot of sleep last night, so I wasn't feeling energetic. I go online, check my email, drink some coffee, read some blogs about other people biking in the winter.

Yes! I can do it! I did it last winter, and I've seen much worse than -4. I can handle it. The roads are clear. It doesn't matter that my winter bike isn't ready. I'll wear an extra pair of gloves and pull the balaclava over my face.

I walk out the door, carrying my bike down the steps to the sidewalk feeling like a total bad-ass when a skinny little 10 year old kid walks past me wearing shorts. He's not shivering at all. He looks at me a few times as I set off, as if to say, "that astronaut outfit is just so you can ride a bike?"

Cycling was the right decision. The fresh air is just what I needed. I have to start thinking about frost bite now that the temperature has dropped below zero. Next time, I'll put some plastic in my shoes to cut down on the air flow and keep my toes warm. Other than that, I was comfortable, if not a little sweaty.

Today's get-up:
regular underwear, no long underwear (which was fine)
wool t-shirt
wool socks
regular cotton hiking pants
fleece jacket
cycling wind/rain proof jacket
cycling shoes
thin balaclava
fleece gloves, with wool gloves on top
no glasses (a little bit annoying, but not enough that I bothered to get them out of my bag)
helmet and reflective vest


Darren J 12/04/2006 12:45:00 p.m.


I'll take the cold over the wet (like last Friday - ugh).
These differences in temperature and road conditions are amazing! I live in York Region, just 30 minutes North of Toronto. It was -9 when I left home this morning, and all roads were covered in snow and slush.

I'm really starting to enjoy my old 'winter' bike (1988) with studded tires and I'm glad I'm not getting all that mess on my 2006 model. My plan is to keep biking as long as I can. We'll see.

At least the sun is shining! That really helps! This reminds me I need to hunt down my balaclava before I go out later today. Not necessary as I winter cycled without it one year but it does make things much more comfy.
I recently discovered that I can pull one of my toques on over my balaclava and still get my older helmet fastened onto my head. That made me soooo happy.
And I think it's almost foamy face-mask time. My nose and cheeks are feeling fairly cold-wind burnt already.

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