Monday Commute

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I didn’t sleep well last night and had lots of weird nightmares. When my alarm went off I had a headache and I felt like I had a fever. It wasn’t a bad headache, but I don’t usually get them so when my head does ache I am a bit of a baby. Convinced that I had a temperature, I stuck a thermometer under my tongue. Two minutes later I discovered my temperature was normal. Okay then, time to get dressed and head out the door.

Even though I felt a little off at first, after a few miles of biking I was fine. I was somewhat lethargic at work, but hey, I made it!

On the way home a car passed me and pulled over ahead of me. As I approached the car, the sweetest little lady popped out and came to the back of the car.

“Are you a young lady under all of that?”

After I answered in the affirmative, she went on tell me that she often sees me biking and wondered if she could give me rides “in a warm car”. I reassured her that if I did need a ride I had lots of family and friends that I could call. So she asked me if I needed a car.  I explained that lived car-free intentionally. Then she shared that she also loves biking and has her bike on a trainer in the winter.

She honestly put such a huge smile on my face with her genuine thoughtfulness. If I am remembering correctly, she is the first woman to offer me a ride this winter. I should have asked if we could meet up sometime to bike together in the summer, but those are the kind of things I don’t remember until after conversations are over.

To work (10 miles)
3:15 am to 4:35 am

Weather
-18F, 6 mph West wind

I wore
Head: ski goggles, balaclava, head band
Torso: thermal shirt, soft shell jacket, rain jacket
Hands: winter gloves with liners
Legs: two pairs of yoga pants, thermal pants, rain pants
Feet: socks, boots
Comments: My legs started getting cold toward the end which is normal. The thing is I could buy actual winter pants to keep me warm, but the problem is I really don’t mind my legs feeling cold. Am I weird?

From work (10 miles)
3:05 pm to 4:20 pm

Weather
3F, 6 mph Northwest wind

I wore
Head: ski goggles, balaclava
Torso: thermal shirt, soft shell jacket, rain jacket
Hands: winter gloves
Legs: two pairs of yoga pants, thermal pants, rain pants
Feet: socks, boots
Comments: Nice.

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29 thoughts on “Monday Commute

  1. That’s great! When we encounter people in our building elevator who ask us about our riding or our bikes, we give a brief answer and he will always ask them “Where’s your bike?” It’s cute, and interesting to hear what people say.

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  2. I just re-read your post on my computer (instead of the iPhone) and missed the part about you being weird. Well maybe … I discovered after many long years of cycling in all types of weather to invest in proper cycling attire – clothing designed for the cold, heat and rain. It took me several years but now I am equipped for all weather conditions and enjoy cycling even more. These are the items that have made the biggest difference for me – wet weather and cold weather booties, wool socks, bib shorts (just makes the ride more comfortable), waterproof/windproof pants with zippers down the legs making it easy to get them on and off, waterproof/windproof jacket, fleece tops, wool tops, waterproof/windproof gloves, helmet covers to guard against the wind and rain, cycling glasses with removable lenses for all lighting conditions.
    Keep cycling. I find your winter commutes inspiring and look forward to your daily updates.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for outlining your most helpful gear, that is a really great list. I am sure that as I go along I will amass more clothes and gear and maybe someday invest in pants that will keep my legs completely warm. Maybe 😉

      Some like it hot, some like it cold!

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    • I know! She was such a great lady and she totally made my day.

      I always wonder what passing cars think of me while I am out biking and whenever I get yelled at (only happened twice but it still shocks me) it makes me feel slightly threatened by all cars for a time. But when someone offers me a ride it totally changes my perspective of motorists.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Bri, I love reading your blog. So with you (mentally) some days! Glad to read you had a bright spot with another happy soul in your hood. When you have a minute, check out Skhoop skirts. They’re synthetic or down skirts in various lengths and they’re awesome to bike in – keeps your butt warm but legs free & cool.

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  4. Biking is indeed a great conversation starter. I park/lock my bike outside my office building, which is near a public bus stop. 9 times out of 10, someone waiting for the bus will strike up a conversation with me as I’m getting ready to head into my office. Tomorrow morning temp will be 5-7 degrees. I’m sure I’ll get some “you’re crazy” type of conversation going with someone. 🙂 Ride safely!

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    • People never seem to realize that we stay warm on our bikes fairly easily because of the body heat from the exercise. I try to explain that they are probably colder sitting in their car while it warms up then I am biking down the road, but it never seems to sink in!

      But being called “crazy” isn’t all that bad, deep down they all think we are epic. (Hopefully at least!)

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      • I’ve ridden in 110 degree weather… (222 miles in a 24-hr period) and in 10 degree weather. It’s all about layers (and water in the hot weather). But yes… on the cold days, I actually stay pretty warm. The 1st 10 minutes are a bit chilly, but after that? I’m good.

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      • It was insane. I didn’t think I could physically drink as much as I did for that period. I rode all night long (in the 80’s) and then when the sun came up, the temps just kept on rising…)

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  5. Weird? Nah, you’re just acclimating to the cold weather. That’s bound to happen the more that you bike in the winter. I wear only half the layers that you do – long underwear and dress pants – but my legs usually aren’t cold. They’re too busy working to be bothered with the cold weather : ) My extremities, though, are a different story. My ears and fingertips get painfully cold if I’m out for a while and they’re not protected. I use behind-the-head earmuffs and ski gloves on most days (two pairs of gloves and a scarf on the frigid days).

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    • It is such a paradox because in some ways this winter has toughened me up and in other ways I am becoming a wimp.

      Prior to this winter, I would just go outside with a hoodie if I thought it was really cold out. Now though, even if I am just walking my dogs I often check the temp and layer accordingly. I shock myself by actually wearing gloves for a ten minute walk, or a scarf…what has happened to me!?!?

      Behind-the-head earmuffs are awesome, I should buy another pair because mine mysteriously disappeared.

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