|Wine country sunset.
Over New Year's weekend, like last year, we took a trip up to Paso Robles for some training in a fresh environment, followed by a little vino and delicious food (fyi: there's a good selection of fresh / farm-to-plate / organic-style restaurants in the area). This year in Paso it was a million times colder than we remembered, though! Hell, "extreme" cold has been the case lately in SoCal in general - literally record lows in the 20s and low 30s. Ouch.
|Benefits of training in wine country....Stock up
on treats for home that keep on giving!
And I didn't. This year our workouts in Paso were solid. Highlights included the 14.4-mile run on New Year's Eve to put me at just over1,000 miles of running for the year. (In a year that included 2 months of no running and a 70.3 focus, I was happy with that stat.)
|Mile 40... duh duh duhhhh... Nasty Grade awaits!
The other highlight: On New Year's Day we took the short drive north to the Wildflower course and rode that bad boy. The ride was especially tough due to my lack of bike fitness and the cold, but I'd like to think that when I'm in shape and it's warmer out that the course actually is not that bad. There are more flat portions than I expected. It's just that last part that is the hardest, from Nasty Grade on. The hills seem a little relentless all the way back to transition. But nothing is "so insane;" the grades and lengths of climbs are comparable to stuff we get around here in SoCal.
More Paso pics at the end of the post!
|Typical as of late.
Despite what you may think, it was not our goal just to ride to Whole Foods down therea. (In fact, after visiting the LJ one I can say for sure that I like my WF's in OC better, especially the Newport Beach one, sorry.) After WF we got back on the bikes (yes, I was frozen at that point after sitting around in wet, sweaty bike clothes and with the temps still being quite low) and we rode another 6-8 miles inland to Green Flash Brewery -- our true reason for riding down! I actually don't really drink that much beer, but I do enjoying sampling different kinds of beers. It's fun and interesting. Plus having a boyfriend who is, I guess you can say, a beer connoisseur, makes it more fun because I've learned about all the different kinds of beers and their tastes, etc. Long gone are the days of PBR and Bud Light at college parties ;)
|Work hard, play hard. Green Flash Brewery.
On the ride home we met another couple who had ridden their bikes down from LA. They were troopers, but I was not envious of their situation: John and I rode with backpacks that had a change of dry clothes, so by that time we were nice and cozy. The couple we met, however, was still in cycling gear and looked freezing. I also felt bad about having a couple delicious-smelling pizzas -- I'm sure they were hungry. We all got to chatting and they were both in awe of our well-thought-out plan for the day haha. We at least offered them pizza and beer... he took a beer.
|His & hers Pizza Port for the ride home? No brainer!
And a brew, shhh...
---Yup, so that's a little glimpse into what's been going on. No need to mention the rest of what's going on because it's been pretty routine (well, except for the fermenting project). Routine is good in my opinion because that means sh*t is getting done. But routine is not as glamorous as the fun, little adventures so I'll spare ya the details.
I guess the biggest point in writing this blog is to say that the "stats" of those adventure rides don't even compare with my best performances on the bike, but the fun I had and the memories I made in the process make them pretty epic rides and way worth the while.
Question: where has your bike taken you lately? And where do you plan on going in your training? Share with me!!!
More from Paso Robles:
|One cold-ass mofo day on the bike. #wuss
|All class in Paso.
|Delicious meal from Artisan. Fraaashhh
|Funky wineries with fun names. Fyi: Keep your glass from Cypher!
|Nope, this ain't home!
|Adventures in Thai food. Build-your-own spinach wraps. Hm.
|Goats like to be on top.