Friday, January 11, 2013

Setting Goals not Resolutions and the Art of Making Changes

In this blog:
Babies times two
What Happened Last Year
Mountain Biking Colorado in December
Welcome back to the 18MPH blog

Welcome 2013! I welcome a new year always with hopes of reaching goals and getting out of the funk of the previous year's energy. However, on the contrary I am a firm believer that time is arbitrary and nothing but an invention to keep order in the chaos. With that said, time is a great tool for setting goals. I am a walking contradiction, indeed.

In 2012 we had the birth of our daughter, our son is growing to be quite the little human and we didn't get as much done as we had hoped. However, it's an amazing journey and experience of just learning  Since this is a blog about raising kids and being normal parents with abnormal activities and better than average lifestyles, I didn't get much writing done since that last entry. We have have been a little too busy baby wrangling. I didn't set too many goals for myself. Not much biking has been done, unless you count commuting to work everyday. Although there were some highlights and some ideas made.

When you have kids a lot get put on the back burner. Even yourself, however, it is important to still set out and make yourself active anyway possible. We have been doing this by getting in crossfit routines while the kids are napping. I've been doing a lot of squats while holding my son, because we both enjoy it. You have to stay fit. When I don't exercise or even get outside to play the lady of the house tells me I'm a grump and she can't be around me. It's this way for a lot of people. Breathing fresh air and being healthy and active is just as important as those kids.

Recently I was sent away for 5 days to Denver. There I worked a few days at a shop called Sol Tribe. As some of you know, my day job is body piercing and has been for a long-ass time. Going to this studio breathed new life into my career. Working there I felt as if I were a part of a family. Everyone worked together. A friend who works there as a tattoo artist, named Aries Rhysing is one amazing human. Clean living to the core. We share a lot in common. It was nice to have time to discuss so many things that I don't get to talk about where I currently work. Going there I packed mountain bike and snowboard gear. Unfortunately Aries had to work in the time I had to be out and about.

Colorado hadn't seen much for snow by this December in 2012. I set out to Golden Bike Shop, where I had a great selection of bikes to rent. at 45.00 you can't beat it. Niner, Santa Cruz, Salsa, Surly, Rocky Mountain, ETC. My favorites. It had snowed the night before, so instead of the Spearfish I set out on a Salsa Beargrease, a fatty race bike. I had only rode one fatbike previously a week before in Minneapolis. My friend, Rob's Surly Pugsley. No mountains for sure, but fun indeed.

first rest on the way to the trail

 I rode from the shop out to the Apex trailhead. Just about 5 mile up a paved path I actually needed a short rest. One goal came up, work on that VO2 Max stuff. The Beargrease and I arrived after only getting slightly lost. On to the trail I was stuck in a snowy valley. Slick though. The 45 nrth Husker Dü tires did a great job handling that rocky and snowy climb. The switchbacks up felt a little sluggish compared to what my niner could do, but the bike still held on to some difficult ones. Once on top, I felt charged for the downhill. I already knew this was going to be a fun bike. It bobbled some, so I let a little pressure out of the tires and that smoothed out the speedy descent. Rolling off that trail, I had found myself both joyed I got to experience that, but saddened that I don't have that in my backyard anymore, like we did in New Mexico.

 first big climb over. Realized I haven't been in the mountains for a while. Damn that's a sexy fatty.

Once returned to Minneapolis I had a head full of ideas and a heart that belongs to the mountains. This year I have a few goals.

The snowy to dry, winding descent

The goals and major changes
• I will be leaving my current job at Saint Sabrina's sometime in the late spring and attend school for surgical technology. Eventually turn that into an RN, working with Orthopedic surgeons. To be honest, though, if I could simply support my family by working for a bike shop or resort, I'd just do that. But I know that turning my career around is whats best for the family and we'll be capable of traveling where ever there's an OR.

• Better diet. No matter how much you work out and ride you never feel truly good unless you put true nutrition back into your body. After my ride in Golden, I devoured pizza and beer. I've never felt crappier. Later I was recovered with delicious sushi. I haven't been into pizza since. Nutrition blogs to come. There's going to be more on training and nutrition as I go. We tried paleo recently. I made my own bars and they were amazing. We did feel super clean and energized. It just hasn't been financially sound for us just yet to keep it going. We do need to make some sacrifices and get back on it.

• Do every race single speed. Just because I can, I like to suffer and try new things.

• Work in a bike shop. Something I've always wanted to do and it can help me stay happy transitioning out of piercing. Mainly I'd like to make sales to people that are making healthy choices for themselves and transitioning to better living or living life by bike.

• Get the kids outside all of the time. I want to raise these kids to respect their bodies as well as the outdoors. They're going to be cooped up a lot in the winter. I want them out at any chance.

• More creative time. The boy already loves to draw. I encourage that. I've never drawn so many moose and bears before. It's fun.

• Get mad at all the negativity life offers a lot less. I'm already off to a good start. The way I've started, is to see it as every negative has a positive. You're put to a test. If you can suffer through this, you'll eventually be rewarded. dwelling on the negative in a situation only brings more negative. (I've had to let a few people in my life go this year because they were too negative. I'm sad about this, but I have less negativity to deal with.)

• Less gear that I don't need. Or even having the desire to want the stuff I don't really need. Every person that bikes, runs, rides, skis, climbs ETC says, "I need that!" We have a sickness. We need to be humble in the fact that we already do something amazing. If you already have something, enjoy what you have. Even if it's not the latest and greatest, holding on to it and using it can only make you stronger later. Mentally and physically. For example, riding a heavier bike with crappy components will make you a stronger rider (and mechanic) when you finally get to having the latest and greatest weight-weenie carbon blah blah. I'm riding rigid, steel and single 29er this year. But yes, I feel the need for Industry Nine wheels and a Niner RDO fork. I've earned it. Just sayin'. I'll wait on my full sus and be more of a bad ass. I think riding the 99er and the Dakota 5-0 with a rigid single speed can also bring respect from the weight-weenies, too. Splurge on some things. Save on others. I'm not in need of any power meters or 1x11 shifting.

• New workouts. New routines. VO2 max training, like I said, thorough interval running and biking. It's possible to get your cardio's ass kicked even when you don't have a lot of time. Yes, I said running. I'm going to do that more, too. We hope we can find some free time to get some swimming in as well.

• Finally, find a wise, financially sound way to move this family back to the mountains. Mom said I would miss it if I moved away. As always, moms are right. When we moved to Minnesota we had the intention of keeping it as home base and traveling often. The family life was not expected, but I can't imagine life without it. We don't make a lot of money to travel out all of the time. The Breck Epic is on my bucket list of things to do, so why not just live near by. Anytime I'm in the mountains all of the stresses in life melts off. I feel more fit than I ever have. I'm always positive and motivated to do anything and feel zero apathy. This leads me to where I want to be the following year to keep setting goals for me and my family. I'd like to eventually take my skills as a snowboarder and be an instructor or use my knowledge of health and safety for the National Ski Patrol. Bombing avalanche zones always seemed up my alley anyways. I threw away the desk job notion long ago.

Yes, you can be 34 and still say, when I grow up I want to...

If you only set resolutions, you're only going to be disappointed. It takes more than a year to change something about yourself. Instead achieve something you never thought possible. That way you can only keep evolving.

At home riding on cold, snowy days. Another goal: shave and get time for a haircut. I'm looking burley.

A note about the bike and the bike shop:

Salsa makes some of the most solid bikes I've come across. Straight to the point, but still innovative. The Beargrease I rode is one of Salsa's latest rides. It's a lighter, more stripped down version of the Mukluk. I'd really be into this bike for riding local trails in the snow, sandy days in the river bottoms and perhaps an Arrowhead 135 race. If I do obtain a fat bike in the future, though, I'd like it more adventure ready. Mukluk would be the way to go for that it seems. However, this thing gave me as much speed and float as any full suss I've been on. Golden Bike shop, Golden, CO has a lot to choose from for demo and rental, and very helpful. You can leave the shop and take your pick of mountains to ride.

Melinda and I will be on a pair of El Mariachi bikes this year (mine's the limited edition SS) check out Salsa's gear at They do travel- A lot and show off they're stuff. A Horse Thief and Mukluk Ti are on my list. I'm also interested in the Warbird as I'd like to get into more road/gravel adventure riding.

Keep evolving.

If you have any goals you'd like to share. Let me know!

Let's share some ideas.

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