Adjusting to snow and ice in the South

As another BIG snow and ice storm rolled through Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia, North and South Carolina, I’m reminded that this is more than a little weird for the Southern triathlete…and it’s more disruptive than training in the more traditional snow belts, when you just go indoors in the winter, plan for it, and that’s it.

Growing up in Canada, I’m used to it…left to go south in part to have a more pleasant winter…ride outside year round…that sort of thing…but this year in the East, you have to go _really_ far south to do that…like south Florida or the Caribbean…North and South Carolina just don’t do it anymore.

So what to do?…I’m inside for the winter…I have my tri-bike permantly setup in my Kurt Kinetic static trainer…special trainer tire and all…and rollers also setup and ready to jump on with the road or mountain bike, if I’m looking for variety.  For years in Charleston, SC I’d watch the weather channel for days, trying to adjust and manage workouts for the ebb and the flow of the weather…and group ride leaders would do the same thing…it’s disruptive for training though…and I would look to the ‘rollers’ with dread if there didn’t look like a suitable break in the weather.

The weather this winter in North Carolina has made it easy…I’m not even going to worry about trying to find a day to ride outside…always the same climate indoors.  Over a lifetime I’ve run outside when it’s cold…and still do as long as the footing isn’t slippery…getting old I guess…and the gym treadmills are only 1 mile away as a default.

…so if you live in the in-between-warm-and-cold belt, consider just setting up properly and planning to train on the bike inside…Short and Fast…and include specific spinning classes if you like to sweat in a group at a specific time.

…I never thought that I’d enjoy it as much…I think largely because the ‘trainer’ was my lousy default if the weather was lousy…and I really didn’t have a planned workout for the trainer, so not much quality when I was ‘forced’ inside…and had to pull out my stuff, and get it setup which added to the pain.

…time really flies by when you’re flogging the effort indoors, and have planned for it, and executing the plan…and there is Netflix online…or great music on the stereo depending on my mood…and a table for my drinks…and a fan with remote control…and I know that’s what I’m going to do on any one day, so I get in the workouts as they come up without any second guessing for days in advance..and ride Fast

The good news is that I will be much faster when the snow clears than if I had a fragmented winter, trying to fit things in around lousy weather.

…and if a brilliant weather day shows up somewhere, and I get to take it outdoors…triple bonus points 🙂

Having said all that, there was that winter that we spent in West Palm Beach a couple of years ago…5 months…never wore a long sleeve shirt on a ride…flat and _Fast_ Lake Worth group ride on Saturday morning with 40-50 other riders, beside the ocean at 25-32MPH…priceless.

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