Thursday, January 2, 2020

2019 By The Numbers And Goodbye Old Friend

I'm on a sardine kick lately. I know, I'm weird. I hadn't had a can of sardines in dozens of years until a few weeks ago. I was strolling the aisles at Cub Foods when I spied the sardine section and for whatever reason, I placed a few cans in my cart. Tammy gave me a sideways glance when she saw my purchase after returning home. Fast-forward to a few days ago when I was back at Cub to replenish my disappeared sardine supply—I think I must've had 20 cans in my cart. I'm at the checkout bagging my groceries when the guy ringing up my order yells down to me, "What's up with all the sardines!?" "I like 'em!" was my quick reply. And I do! I'm glad I wasn't buying 20 packs of condoms.

I continue to add to my inventory of stained glass sun-catchers (my most recent creation) but I think I'm about to focus my attention on the openings above our main-level cabinets and come up with a design for stained glass panels for them. There are 15 panels in total to be done. I've got some ideas kicking around in my head but I've yet to sit down and sketch something out.

There will be no New Year's resolutions for me. There never are.

My riding mileage goal going into 2019 was 5000 miles (8000 km). While I met my goal, a lot of those miles were done on my indoor trainer, and while it gives me a great workout, it gives me credit for going faster than I otherwise would on the road. But even factoring that in, I surpassed my goal. I'll use the same goal of 5000 miles this year. I suppose that's a resolution of sorts.

2019 by the numbers (thanks to my Garmin devices):

road bike: 1200 miles
fatbike: 90 miles
gravel bike: 2097 miles
Kickr Core (indoor trainer): 2346 miles
total: 5733 miles
Continuing...
Elliptical: 74 miles
golfing: 279 miles
walks with Charlie: 198 miles
treadmill: 69 miles
walking: 207 miles

I've been reluctant to do any outdoor riding while I'm still in my cluster headache phase for fear of an attack while I'm out on the trails. I carry an Imitrex nasal spray with me but those don't always work and the last thing I want is to be far removed from a place to comfortably and quietly manage my pain. I've got a portable tank of oxygen that I keep in the car and it's my go-to remedy for these beasts when they appear either at home or away. Thankfully, this phase of headaches isn't as bad as previous cycles and I'm fairing well. Where I'm typically on a daily dose of 50 mg of prednisone as a preventative to the headaches, I've been able to get by only 35 mg so far.

I felt well enough yesterday to take to the trails along the river bottoms. What a beautiful day it was to be out riding. I had such a nice time. One sad reality, though. As I approached Black Dog powerplant I got my first glimpse of it minus its large smokestack. The smokestack (along with two smaller stacks) was dismantled last summer. I've mentioned before how I've been doing workouts in the shadow of that stack for decades—34 years. In the mid-'80s and into the '90s I used to be a runner and would run thousands of miles along Black Dog road. I've also done my share of cycling on that same stretch of what used to be a pothole-strewn surface, abandoned by the city of Burnsville some 10 years ago and since reclaimed and resurfaced by a cooperation between the city and the powerplant. Honestly, I would like to have stood under that familiar, ever-present stack one last time and said a proper goodbye. It was like an old friend.

Embedded below is some video from yesterday's ride.

That's all I've got


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