My Health Strategy

empty gym

There was a time in my life when I could bang out 96 push-ups in two minutes, 120 situps in another two, and peel off a 2-mile run in 10:30. I miss being in that kind of shape. Realistically, I know it’s going to be difficult (if not impossible) to turn the clock back 20 years and be in the same physical shape I was in while stationed at Fort Bragg. But I want to get healthier and get back to racing again.

This year, I started riding again — more than I have since about 2007, and started logging all my data with Strava and a Garmin. My main thrust was trying to commute to work once a week — the route is mostly flat, and about 23-25 miles one-way (depending on the trail closure). Over the course of the summer, I got faster and faster at it, and enjoyed myself more and more as I could see serious progress happening in my Strava data. Even riding that once per week, I noticed not only my times improving (and setting several PRs per ride), but I noticed that I was dropping weight — my face was getting thinner, my pants were more loose, and the little beer belly I’d built up over the last decade was melting away. When I rode the Powderhorn 24 in August as part of a team, I felt super-strong and was happily cranking out the miles. Things have been on the upswing.

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Comeback Road

Yesterday I did my longest ride in two years, and while it wasn’t ideal — a couple of flat tires, $110 in repairs at the 25-mile mark, problems with my powermeter, bonking hard, etc., I still had a great time. During the ride, I had time to think a bit about what I was doing and how I felt about biking.

Since starting to commute to work regularly (once or twice a week), I’ve started to get back into this whole biking thing and fall back in love with it. Yesterday’s ride was a tune-up for the Powderhorn 24, which starts Friday evening and ends Saturday evening.

I’ve been shedding weight and adding muscle since mid-June, but I’m still not where I’d like to be.

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