Tuesday, November 3, 2009

work gets in the way

With the launch of a new product at work, I had to choose very carefully how I wanted to spend the very limited amount of free time available: cycling or blogging.

Naturally, i chose cycling.

Being a corporate firefighter, work will always interfere with training and playing schedules. So how to train for an upcoming 24-hours, or a JoBerg2C, or a possible cycle tour to Everest base camp, and still keep the clients happy - so that you'll be able to afford the adventures?

Some of my solutions:

Commute
Cycle to work.
Nobody loves traffic. So use that traffic time, that's wasted anyway, to cycle to work and back. There might be great off-road-possibilities between home and work, and you arrive at work in a good mood. Add detours if the distance is too short. It also is a good excuse to buy (and test) some decent lights for the bike (you need it for the 24 hours anyway)

Run after work while it's still light
So, you have to stay at work till long after it's safe to cycle through Delta Park all on your own.
Pack your running kit in, and go run in the late afternoon for an hour. Running is good for ... something ... Feel the freedom of running with a huge grin while everybody else is stuck in peak-hour traffic. Leave the ipod at home - use the running-time to think of nothing - and arrive back at work with fresh new ideas on how to tackle the problem that you were stuck on just before the run. Use running-days to stock up on hours at work, so that you have negotiating power for when you want to leave early the next day to go on your nightride.

Daylight savings: Cycle in the Dark
Being a mountain biker, i try to limit running to only those days when there's nothing else to lift my endorphins ... you need a car at work for various reasons (a trip to the bike shop during lunchtime for a new bottom bracket, for example) - so you can't commute. Enters night rides.
You bought the new lights for the commute anyway - might as well then go use it somewhere.
- The MTN bikepark is open on Tuesday nights till 8. Arrive at work early (or use credits built up during running-days) and leave early. Enough time for a few laps in daulight, and then put on lights for some night-fun. At night there are no wizz-kids pointing and laughing at you on the BMX-track, and nightriding helps a lot with skills (you're on the obstacle before you saw it ... nothing you can do, so just ride it)
- There's also the Dark & Dirty crowd that leaves on 19:00 on Thursday evenings from the Irene mall. This is arguably Gauteng's coolest crowd, and you will go home late, dirty and happy. Traffic from Jo-burg to Pretoria made it impossible for me to attend those rides, but as soon as the workload lightens, i will go that way again to fill up with endorphins. I will not, however, give up the commuting, night-riding in the bikepark, and running :)

oh, and get a rain jacket.
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